Home / State of Florida / Florida Elections Chief Resigns When Blackface Photos Emerge

Florida Elections Chief Resigns When Blackface Photos Emerge

By
Michael Ertel is the former Seminole County Supervisor of Elections. He has now resigned as Florida Secretary of State. (Photo courtesy of Seminole County)

TALLAHASSEE — Florida’s top elections official has abruptly resigned after a newspaper obtained pictures of him in blackface posing as a Hurricane Katrina victim.

Secretary of State Michael Ertel resigned Thursday afternoon just hours after he testified about election lawsuits before a state legislative committee.

The Tallahassee Democrat obtained pictures taken at a Halloween party 14 years ago that show Ertel dressed in blackface. The photos were taken two months after the deadly storm ravaged the Gulf Coast region.

Ertel had been the Seminole County supervisor of elections and was picked by new Gov. Ron DeSantis to take over the department that oversees elections.

During his campaign for governor, DeSantis came under fire from Democrats who said he made racially divisive comments about Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum.

Ertel’s Twitter account has also been deleted.

About Associated Press

The Associated Press is a wire service to which WUFT News subscribes.

Check Also

Health Facilities Evacuated As Dorian Looms

Florida officials said Monday that 72 nursing homes and assisted living facilities and seven hospitals …