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Pressure increases for Bridget Ziegler to resign from school board amid scandal

Resolution recommends asking Ziegler to quit Sarasota County School Board
Bridget Ziegler
Posted at 2:40 PM, Dec 12, 2023

SARASOTA, Fla. — The attention surrounding the personal sex life of Sarasota County school board member Bridget Ziegler is now the basis of mounting pressure for her to quit her public life with the board.

“I am not concerned with the salacious details of the Ziegler’s’ sexcapades,” said Tom Edwards, one of two Sarasota County School board members calling for Ziegler to step down from the role with the board.

“My focus as an elected official overseeing student outcomes and academic achievement is to remove the distraction as quickly as possible and get back to the business at hand,” he said.

The calls for Ziegler’s resignation followed the release of Sarasota court records that reveal Ziegler engaged in a consensual three-way sexual encounter with her husband, Christian, and another woman just over a year ago.

That woman is now accusing Ziegler’s husband, Christian, of rape. Christian Ziegler is head of Florida’s Republican party. Despite calls for his own resignation, including calls from the Governor, Christian Ziegler has not resigned from his position with the GOP.

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Meantime, his wife’s future with the school board appears to also be on shaky ground.

Bridget Ziegler was first appointed to Sarasota’s school board in 2014 by then-Governor Rick Scott. She’s been re-elected twice, campaigning on protecting parental rights and conservative values, including keeping critical race theory out of the classroom and sex education focused on biology, not pleasure, according to her campaign website.

Ziegler, who was a co-founder of the conservative group Moms for Liberty, is also credited for helping to lay the groundwork for what critics would later dub Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law. 

“We don't take issue with her choice to engage in the sexual activities that she's engaged in. That's her personal choice. The problem is the hypocrisy, the blatant hypocrisy to call out others and talk about morality and family values while engaging in the activities that she's engaged in,” said Lisa Schurr, head of the Sarasota chapter for Support our Schools, a liberal advocacy group.

But the latest calls for Ziegler’s resignation from the school board aren’t coming from just the left.

Sarasota County school board chair, Karen Rose, a conservative ally, sent us the following statement

Our community has been rocked by the disturbing revelations surrounding my fellow school board member, Bridget Ziegler, and the criminal allegations against her husband, Christian Ziegler. For the good of our students, teachers, staff, and community, I will be calling on Mrs. Ziegler to step down from her position on the school board. Given the intense media scrutiny locally and nationally, her continued presence on the board would cause irreparably harmful distractions to our critical mission.

On Tuesday, the school will vote on a resolution to formally ask Ziegler to resign from her position. As of Monday afternoon, Ziegler has not responded to multiple requests for comment.

No formal charges have been filed against Christian Ziegler.

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