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Florida School Board Recommends Member’s Resignation Amidst Scandal

Tuesday’s vote by the Florida school board recommended the resignation of one of its members due to the member’s involvement in the aftermath of her husband, the state chairman of the Republican Party, being the subject of a sexual assault investigation.

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Sarasota County School Board Passes Resolution Seeking Bridget Ziegler’s Resignation

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Although Bridget Ziegler cannot be removed from the panel directly, the Sarasota County School Board voted 4-1 on a resolution on Tuesday asking that she resign.

Board Chair Expresses Regret Over Scandal and Necessity for Action

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Board Chair Karen Rose wrote the resolution. In an email, she expressed her shock and sadness over the [expletive removed] claims against Ziegler’s husband, Christian Ziegler, as well as the couple’s admissions of having had a three-way sexual encounter with the accuser in the past.

Bridget Ziegler Remains on School Board Despite Resolution

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Rose wrote in the letter: “I personally care about Bridget and her family and deeply regret the necessity for this course of action, but given the intense media scrutiny locally and nationally, her continued presence on the Board would cause irreparably harmful distractions to our critical mission.”

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Demonstrators Protest Against Ziegler Outside Meeting

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Before the gathering began, a few dozen demonstrators marched outside holding signs with the slogan, “Hey hey, ho ho, Bridget Ziegler has got to go.” The slogans “Ban Bridget, not books” and “Real women are not homophobes” were also among those on the signs.

Calls for Ziegler’s Apology and Resignation Continue

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Carol Lerner of Support Our Schools, a non-profit organization that supports public education, said: “Bridget Ziegler must apologize and resign” and “The Zieglers are through and through grifters.”

School Board Member Emphasizes Focus on Education Amidst Scandal

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Board member Tim Enos stated that Bridget Ziegler is free to choose whether or not to resign. A school board member may only be removed by the governor of Florida and only in specific circumstances, such as in response to a criminal charge.

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Sexual Assault Allegations Against Christian Ziegler Under Investigation

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“If she continues and doesn’t resign and stays, we have an obligation that we all need to be focused on education,” Enos said. “The politics have to get outside the boardroom. It should be only about the kids.”

The Alleged Assault

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The Sarasota Police Department is looking into a woman’s claim that in October, Christian Ziegler sexually assaulted her at her apartment. According to police records, the woman and the Zieglers had scheduled a sexual threesome for that day, but Bridget Ziegler was unable to attend.

Christian Ziegler Defends Himself

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The documents state that the accuser claims Christian Ziegler assaulted her when he arrived. Christian Ziegler insists the encounter was consensual and has not been charged with any crimes. He maintains his innocence.

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Ziegler Asked To Resign

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Ziegler has been asked to resign as GOP chair by Governor Ron DeSantis and other Florida Republicans, but he has refused.

But Refuses

AUSTIN, TEXAS – MARCH 7: The Supreme Court of the Texas State Capitol building on March 7, 2014 in Austin, Texas — Photo by demerzel21

“We have a country to save and I am not going to let false allegations of a crime put that mission on the bench as I wait for this process to wrap up,” Christian Ziegler stated in a recent message to Florida Republicans, explaining why he would continue in his role as chair.

Attorney Hopes for Closure in Investigation

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Derek Byrd, Christian Ziegler’s attorney, expressed his “hope (that the) investigation is closed soon” in an email on Monday. According to a spokesman for the Sarasota Police Department, there is no deadline for the investigation’s completion.

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Bridget Ziegler’s Involvement in Conservative Politics

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Bridget Ziegler has been involved in conservative politics for a long time. She supported the DeSantis-backed legislation, dubbed “Do not Say Gay” by opponents, which limits the teaching of gender and sexuality in the lower grades of education.

Moms For Liberty

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Moms for Liberty, a group she co-founded in 2021, seeks to remove books the group finds objectionable from school classrooms and libraries, restrict transgender rights, and introduce more conservative viewpoints into educational institutions.

Central Florida Tourism Oversight District Appointment and Disney Controversy

Burbank, California, USA. January 8, 2022. Editorial Use Only, 3D CGI. The Walt Disney Company American Media Multinational Entertainment Video Network. Workplace in High-rise Office Headquarters. — Photo by askarimullin

DeSantis also appointed Bridget Ziegler to the newly created Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, which is in charge of managing operations at Walt Disney World. Disney objected to the “Do not Say Gay” law, so DeSantis asked the Legislature to create a panel that would replace the Disney-controlled one. Regarding control of the massive theme park outside of Orlando, the board is currently facing lawsuits from both state and federal courts.

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Alleged Hypocrisy of Zieglers’ Actions in Relation to Conservative Views

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Democrats and other critics say the Zieglers are hypocritical because their alleged sexual activities are completely at odds with the conservative views they push on others, particularly LGBTQ people. According to state Democratic Party Chair Nikki Fried, “Reproductive rights or the existence of LGBTQ+ Floridians—as well as the Zieglers—have become targets of their vicious attacks.” She added, “The level of hypocrisy in this situation is stunning.”

State GOP Meeting Called to Discuss Christian Ziegler’s Future

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The state GOP has called a meeting for Sunday in Orlando to discuss Christian Ziegler’s future as party chair.

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