Alexander Won’t Seek Re-Election Amid Allegations

Alexander Won’t Seek Re-Election Amid Allegations

By Ryan Dailey, The News Service of Florida

TALLAHASSEE — Six months away from becoming the state House Democratic leader, Rep. Ramon Alexander on Thursday announced he won’t seek re-election this year to his North Florida seat amid a controversy involving sexual-harassment allegations.

Alexander was chosen last year to become House Democratic leader after the 2022 elections for a two-year term. But his announcement Thursday left Democrats seeking a new successor to outgoing Leader Evan Jenne, D-Dania Beach.

Alexander, who represents Gadsden County and part of Leon County, became embroiled in controversy this week after a report by the Tallahassee Democrat newspaper detailed allegations made by a former Florida A&M University employee.

Michael Johnson, Jr. was fired by the university in January after working as an associate athletic director since June 2020. After his termination, Johnson filed complaints with the Florida Commission on Human Relations that included accusations that Alexander groped him and sent him sexually explicit images, according to the newspaper report.

In the newspaper report, Alexander described a consensual relationship with Johnson — which Johnson denied.

The 37-year-old Alexander is married with two children. A 2007 graduate of FAMU, Alexander has close ties to the university after serving as its student-body president and on its Board of Trustees. In January, Alexander delivered the school’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Convocation address.

Alexander issued a three-paragraph statement Thursday about his decision to forego re-election to the House. The statement did not mention the allegations against him.

“Words will never fully describe how truly grateful I have been over these many years, to represent and fight for my community in the Florida Legislature. Meaningful public service has always been about making a significant difference in the lives of others without self promotion, spectacle or fanfare,” the statement said.

Alexander added that it was after “thoughtful consideration and personal self reflection” that he decided to not seek re-election for what would be his final term in the House.

The controversy derailed Alexander’s political career and came as Democrats try to gain seats in the Republican-dominated House.

During the 2022 legislative session, Alexander, who served as Democratic whip, received national media attention for an impassioned speech in opposition to a bill (HB 7) that sought to limit how certain race-related topics can be taught in public schools and in workplace training. Gov. Ron DeSantis last month signed the measure, which was an outgrowth of DeSantis’ fight against critical race theory.

Jenne, who faces term limits this year, said in a statement Thursday that Alexander and his family “are in my thoughts as they navigate into this next phase of their lives.”

“In the near future, our caucus will meet to elect a new leader designate to take over when I leave office in November. In the meantime, we will continue to focus on tackling the problems of the state and improving the lives of all Floridians,” Jenne said.

Rep. Fentrice Driskell, D-Tampa, was elected by House Democrats to succeed Alexander as leader in 2024.

It was not immediately clear if Driskell would become leader in November. But if so, she would become the third House member chosen to follow Jenne.

Rep. Ben Diamond, D-St. Petersburg, had initially been in line to take over after Jenne, but he decided to run for Congress instead of seeking another term in the state House. Diamond on Thursday suspended his campaign for a Tampa Bay-area congressional seat.

It also was not clear who might run for Alexander’s House seat. He was the only candidate who had opened a campaign account in House District 8, according to the state Division of Elections website.

11 Responses to "Alexander Won’t Seek Re-Election Amid Allegations"

  1. O/T – the Tallahassee Democrat’s James Call makes a sad case in an attempt to make Rep. Jason Shoaf and conservative parents look like vigilantes as Lorraine Ausley is trying to portray them as.

    He attempts to build up his ridiculousness wokeness by adding comments by Allison Tant and Leon County School Superintendent Rocky Hanna into the mix with their hysterical ridiculous pro-CRT WOKE comments.

    While James Call is spewing woke propaganda… gas prices are sky-high, Americans lost their lives in Afghanistan, voter fraud is being discovered daily in the 2020 election, Russia is at war with the Ukraine, the Democrats illegally put forth a Russian hoax, the Bidens have committed treason, local and National Crime is out of control, half the local Democratic Party elected officials are perverts, etc.

    The editor and publisher at the Tallahassee Democrat may want to get some self-awareness.

    177 days until the election.

  2. So many voters (and illegal voters) got it wrong..

    Pray for the baby formula shortage to get back on track…

    178 days until the general election.

  3. It must be something in the water over there on Whanish way. He’ll go and we will get another depraved reprobate to replace him. That seems to be the only thing our government really excels at – going from bad to worse…

  4. This type of male bonding seems to run rampant amoung powerfull men of color. I was able to review the TDO article which was more graphic than I ever expected from a leftist publication. The way it was written made it appear powerfull men at FAMU may have known about and perhaps were compilicant in such behavior. Why cant they just golf, fish, hunt like most men? Who in their right mind obsesses about doing another man on their desk at the Florida Capitol?
    Anyway none of the above is important at all. What is important is that we pray for his wife and kids just as we did when Andrew Gillum flamed out in such a public way.
    Even though the good book classifies such behavior as an abomination the ones who engage in that should be encouraged to pray for forgiveness.

  5. Easier to slither off quietly than go down in flames.
    It also makes it easier to slither back when things settle down.

  6. There is no excuse for this Behavior and he hopefully will have no contact with the youth club that he started for boys.

    It’s 3 for 3 now and this is disgusting… Andrew Gillum, Nick Maddox, Ramon Alexander.

    The Children Services Council director was a Andrew Gillum campaign staffer who did and said nothing and now is associated with a children’s group; are you kidding me. Nice going mr. And mrs. Failey on that one!

    I am tired of these woke, liberal, stupid, immoral idiots! Vote them out!!!

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