Evan Power announces run for Florida GOP Chair

Evan Power, Republican Party of Florida Vice Chair, announced he will run for state Chair. An election is planned for Jan. 8, presuming the state executive committee votes to remove current Chair Christian Ziegler.

‘”It is imperative we move the party forward quickly and efficiently,” the Tallahassee Republican told Florida Politics. “With the 2024 elections less than a year away we need to hit the ground running. On Jan. 8 I will ask my fellow RPOF members to entrust me with the responsibility to lead our Republican team to victory.”

Power ran against Ziegler earlier this year for the position of state Chair, which Ziegler narrowly won in February. Ziegler at the time encouraged Power’s election as Vice Chair to unite the party after the close contest.

At the time, Ziegler’s win was viewed as a victory for supporters of former President Donald Trump over those close to Gov. Ron DeSantis, two Florida candidates currently competing for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination.

But in the past few weeks, calls for Ziegler’s resignation have grown amid a swirling sex scandal and ongoing rape investigation. A woman told police Ziegler in October raped her in a Sarasota apartment. Ziegler admits the sexual encounter occurred but said it was consensual, and investigation documents show he and his wife, Sarasota County School Board member Bridget Ziegler, previously had a tryst with the woman leveling accusations now.

The investigation and accompanying revelations prompted calls for Ziegler’s resignation as state Chair from every statewide elected official, including DeSantis. The executive board at a meeting called by Power on Sunday voted to reduce Ziegler’s salary to $1 dollar, strip him of authority over party business and censure him. Of note, Ziegler has questioned the legality of the executive board holding a meeting he did not call.

Now, the party’s full executive committee is scheduled to meet on Jan. 8 in Tallahassee for the purpose of formally removing Ziegler and electing a new state Chair.

Power is the first to formally announce a run for state Chair. In the meantime, he as Vice Chair is serving effectively as Acting Chair until an election can be held.

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