Michael Ertel, Chief Electoral Officer of Florida, who was appointed by Mr. DeSantis in 2005 has resigned from his position after his racially inappropriate pictures taken in the past resurfaced.
He has received several awards for his contribution to increasing voter registration. He significantly increased the number of voters during the electoral process.
He also gave 1.4 million people, who were previously felons, their voting rights. He lived a part of his teenage life on the streets as a homeless person and later struggled to become a polling supervisor. His career at the Public Relations Department also included working in the tourism industry in Florida. He also served in the army and worked with public services.
Recently, some of Mr. Ertel’s pictures from the past resurfaced where he was dressed in a particular manner with black paint on his face. These photos were taken at a Halloween party a few years back. The Republican was seen in black makeup and red lipstick, wearing earrings and a bandana.
About that time the tragic Katrina devastation had taken place in the state of New Orleans. A city that is known to have a high portion (around 60%) of the black community. Hence, the picture was a mockery to their community.
The pictures were sent to the governor’s office, Ron DeSantis. The governor, having seen the photos, soon accepted Mr. Ertel’s resignation.
The governor held a press conference and said that this was an unfortunate event. He realizes that the election supervisor regrets the incident that occurred 15 years ago, but still the governor wants his electives to lead by example. If this kind of picture is lying around, it would give a very negative impression to all the officials and the general public. It was therefore thought that it would be best to put all this behind and approve his resignation.
These kinds of photos relate to very ill-fated events that have taken place in the past. Where white people blackened their faces to mock or call the black community out.
A few such events have occurred in the past, with some students from Kentucky High School, blackened their faces and had black paint smudged all over their bodies. They did this against a player who belonged to the black community of the rival team.