Candidates angered by Mike Greenwell’s appointment to vacant Lee County Commission seat

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LEE COUNTY, Fla. — Republican candidates are crying foul after Governor Ron DeSantis appointed a former baseball player to fill a vacant Lee County Commission seat.

Mike Greenwell is one person running to be the commissioner that fills the late Frank Mann’s office.

The other candidates claim the appointment gives Greenwell an unfair advantage in the upcoming primary.

It’s rare the republicans endorse during a primary, but two republican candidates believe politics could end up determining the race.

“It looks like it’s very clearly being done to try and influence the outcome of an election in a primary,” said candidate John Albion.

The republican who held the seat in the past is questioning why the governor appointed Greenwell just weeks before the primary when voters could have decided the matter.

“He basically choose between family. How do people feel when one sibling is picked over another by a parent? I think that is a bit of what happened here,” Albion stated.

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While both he and his republican challenger Joseph Gambino say they support the governor they believe he may have been played.

“I just think he’s getting some bad advice,” Gambino said.

Gambino called on Greenwell to step down from the county commission seat so that he could finish the election on a level playing field.

Greenwell said he has no plans to step down.

“I respect the governor picking me. It’s an honor and I believe if the governor would have picked any one of them they wouldn’t be stepping down,” Greenwell responded.

When Gambino was asked if he would have accepted the job if the governor had appointed him he responded with a no.

“I wouldn’t have because less than 30 days left I don’t think it’s necessary,” Gambino said.

“I think it would be really difficult for anybody when the governor asks but I would at least question why are we doing this now? Because I’d want to protect the governor’s reputation also,” responded Albion.

The governor’s office said the governor exercised his authority to appoint someone to the vacancy after Frank Mann passed away.

Lee County commissioners are on summer break. Their next meeting is slated for August 2nd.

It will be Greenwell’s first meeting.

Tags: Lee CountyLee County CommissionersMike Greenwell

 

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