Florida secretary of state says she’s resigning

Laurel Lee believed to be pursuing congressional seat
Published: May. 12, 2022 at 3:56 PM EDT
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Florida’s secretary of state is resigning amid speculation she will pursue a seat in Congress.

Laurel Lee on Wednesday sent a resignation letter to Gov. Ron DeSantis, effective May 16.

Lee was appointed by DeSantis in 2019 after the resignation of Mike Ertel, who stepped down less than a month into office after photographs of him dressed in blackface at a 2005 Halloween party surfaced.

"I am so grateful for the confidence you placed in me, and it was my honor to work in your administration, serving the citizens of Florida to build a stronger future for our state," Lee said in her resignation letter.

Although she did not give a reason for resigning, Lee is believed to be eyeing a Tampa Bay-area congressional seat.

Before being appointed secretary of state, Lee was a federal prosecutor and circuit judge in Hillsborough County.

Lee is also married to Tom Lee, a former Republican state senator who served as Florida Senate president from 2004-06.

In her resignation letter, Laurel Lee thanked DeSantis and praised his leadership, saying the "Department of State is stronger and better than when we found it."

"Thank you for the opportunity to be part of your team, and I look forward to what the future holds," she said.

Scripps Only Content 2022