Florida state Sen. Frank Artiles resigns over fury of barroom insults

Florida state Sen. Frank Artiles resigns over fury of barroom insults

Florida state Sen. Frank Artiles, a Miami Republican shown here in March 2012, used a racial slur and vulgar language in a conversation with two black colleagues and subsequently submitted a resignation letter to the Senate president's office on April 21, 2017.

TALLAHASSEE — A Florida state senator from Miami resigned Friday in wake of a scandal over insults he hurled at two fellow senators in a private Tallahassee club.

GOP Sen. Frank Artiles sent a letter to Senate President Joe Negron, a Republican from Stuart, Fla., announcing his resignation, saying he was doing so to protect his family and the integrity of the legislative chamber.

"My actions and my presence in government is now a distraction to my colleagues, the legislative process and the citizens of our great state," Artiles wrote. "I am responsible and I am accountable and effective immediately, I am resigning from the Florida State Senate."

Gov. Rick Scott, also a Republican, responded quickly to Artiles resignation while visiting brush fires threatening Golden Gate Estates neighborhood in Naples, Fla.

? Related:Texas mayor resigns on Facebook — after 37 days in office
? Related:Racist or fake? Michigan mayor under fire after rude recordings aired

"If he worked for me, I would have fired him," Scott said of Artiles. "It's disgusting. If somebody does that stuff, you fire him immediately."

Black lawmakers from the House and Senate called for Artiles' expulsion after his Monday night tirade against state Sens. Audrey Gibson of Jacksonville and Perry Thurston of Fort Lauderdale, both Democrats. Aritles called Gibson a pejorative of female dog and a "girl," and referred to some of his fellow Republicans using the N-word.

Artiles apologized Wednesday on the Senate floor for the comments he made from the bar inside the private Governors Club. But that did not settle any outrage.

? Related:Pennsylvania mayor accused of racist post on Obamas allowed to resign
? Related:Cops in small Missouri town greet black mayor with resignations

Later that day, Thurston filed a formal complaint against Artiles with Negron, spurring a chamber investigation that was to conclude Tuesday.

Negron initially had said Artiles' apology settled the matter and his constituents would decide the politician's fate. On Friday, Negron said Artiles made the right decision.

"As Senator Artiles has noted, he holds himself responsible and accountable for his actions and comments," Negron wrote. “Despite the events of the last week, Senator Artiles has a long and proud record of public service.

? Related:Nevada speaker-designate steps down after column scandal
? Related:Italian senator urged to resign after racist comment

"We all owe him a debt of gratitude for serving our country in the United States Marine Corps, where he fought for our freedom in the global war on terror," Negron said.

Senate Democratic Leader Oscar Braynon of Miami Gardens said Artiles made a right and honorable decision.

"I take no pleasure in these unfortunate events," Braynon wrote. "But I urge that we learn from them. In our communities, our state, and our country, there should be a message of hope, of tolerance, of unity. We cannot afford the high cost words of divisiveness and cruelty leave in their wake.

“I wish Senator Artiles the best, and I hope that, upon reflection, he finds consolation in knowing that his actions, today, show the contrition demanded, and the Senate was owed," Braynon said.



Add Comment

all comments

  Other news

more
Pair jailed for 'Dark Ages' murder of vulnerable man

Pair jailed for 'Dark Ages' murder of vulnerable man..

27-Jun, 09:36

Two people have been jailed for life for murdering a vulnerable man who...

Two more cases of human plague confirmed in New Mexico

Two more cases of human plague confirmed in New Mexico..

27-Jun, 08:24

An image provided by Rocky Mountain Laboratories showing an electron...

Coronation Street’s Kym Marsh 'humbled' after visiting 10-year-old fan who was injured in the Manchester terror attack at an Ariana Grande concert – which killed 22 and injured 59

Coronation Street’s Kym Marsh 'humbled' after visiting 10-year-old fan who was injured in the..

27-Jun, 17:24

Soap actress Kym, who has had a worker bee tattooed on her in tribute to...

Petya cyberattack hits Europe, disrupting banks, government agencies

Petya cyberattack hits Europe, disrupting banks, government agencies..

27-Jun, 14:30

The logo of the 'Rosneft' petroleum company on the wall of its...

House Republicans face voters in home districts angry over health care bill

House Republicans face voters in home districts angry over health care bill..

06-May, 13:16

Some Republican members of Congress who voted for a bill to repeal and...

'This Week' Transcript 1-29-17: Sean Spicer, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Robert Gates

'This Week' Transcript 1-29-17: Sean Spicer, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Robert Gates..

29-Jan, 10:09

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT FOR 'THIS WEEK' on January 29, 2017 and it will...

Thai police: Attacks kill 2 suspected insurgents in south

Thai police: Attacks kill 2 suspected insurgents in south..

20-Apr, 01:32

Police say grenade and bomb attacks have struck Thailand's restive south,...

Judge Who Blocked Trump's Immigration Order Was Praised for Representing Refugees

Judge Who Blocked Trump's Immigration Order Was Praised for Representing Refugees..

04-Feb, 15:08

James Robart, the federal judge for the United States District Court for...