Florida state senator stripped of chairmanship

Alvin Kelly
April 20, 2017

"I extend a heartfelt apology to my colleagues and to all of those I have offended", said Artiles, a Cuban-American from the Miami area.

Frank Artiles was with Democratic Sens.

"I stand up before all of you, every one of you, and with great humility, I ask for your forgiveness", Mr Artiles said on Wednesday in a almost four-minute mea culpa. "No one deserves to be spoken to that way, much less a person of your stature, dignity and integrity".

Gibson did not look at him even once.

A Florida state senator is under pressure to resign after allegedly using a series of sexist and racist slurs to describe his colleagues. He also fired obscenities during a conversation with Democratic Sens.

"I am so sorry for the words and the tone that I used with you regretfully Monday night", Artiles said to Gibson, a Jacksonville Democrat. Gibson and Perry Thurston, who was sitting at the same table as Gibson when Artiles made the remarks. Audrey Gibson and Perry Thurston that the Florida Senate president Joe Negron was able to secure his leadership role because "six n*ggers" elected him.

Just before the apology, Negron replaced Artiles as chairman of the Communications, Energy and Public Utilities Committee.

Artiles says his comments were fueled by his frustration with getting his measures through the chamber and the perception that the House has the upper hand in negotiations.

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While having drinks at Tallahassee's exclusive Governor's Club, "Artiles told Sens". His excuse for using it is "inadequate", he conceded.

"I grew up in a diverse community". We share each others customs, culture and vernacular.

But the action was considered to be a non-apology by Gibson herself because of Artiles' reluctance and how late the apology was in coming.

Troubles for Republican Sen.

He reportedly confronted Gibson for asking questions critical of his legislation during a Senate hearing, calling Gibson a "girl" and "bitch". Gibson said she never meant to talk publicly about Artiles' remarks, but his tirade was witnessed by enough people that the story hit the press.

Earlier, she said, "There is a firestorm and it's an unfortunate circumstance". "But words have consequences in no matter what setting you're in".

The Black Caucus has called an emergency meeting for Wednesday in response to the incident. Audrey Gibson and Senate President Joe Negron, for offensive comments he made that have caused him to lose a chairmanship and led to calls for his resignation. But the Herald pointed out that the only Blacks in the Florida state senate are Democrats and none of them supported Negron, a Republican, to get the position.

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