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Who's bigger threat to Fla- Trey Radel or Ken Detzner?

Radel, Detzner

Times Files

Radel, Detzner



Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano:

They have called for his head, his job, his political future.

From the governor to the state Republican Party chairman to Democrats in every direction, the chorus has been predictably harmonious.

They say U.S. Rep. Trey Radel, a Republican from Fort Myers, should resign at mid-term following his recent guilty plea to a misdemeanor charge of buying cocaine.

Please excuse me for singing a different tune.

Radel's crime was foolish. Reckless. It showed a serious lack of judgment and possibly a major flaw in character. And when he comes up for re-election next year, I would not fault any voter from southwest Florida who wants to go in another direction.

But Radel did not directly harm anyone from his district, other than his own family. He has admitted his mistake, apologized and entered rehab. The consequences are all his own, and probably won't have a major impact on the citizens he was chosen to represent.

To me, that's where the line should be drawn.

Abrupt resignations should be reserved for someone who has knowingly, and repeatedly, acted against the best interests of a significant number of Florida residents.

Like, perhaps, the Secretary of State

Full column here

[Last modified: Saturday, November 30, 2013 7:54pm]


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