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Letter to the Editor

Choose Meritocracy at SOE Office


What type of administration and governance do you desire in Manatee County....one based on merit or politics?

The scenario surrounding the vacation of Supervisor of Elections position by retiring Michael Bennett has been well reported. Bennett highly recommended to Governor DeSantis that his long-time second Chief of Staff, Scott Farrington, should be the temporary appointment until election time. Farrington has a robust, lengthy, successful resume in the field. His appointment would have made the transition as seamless as possible. However, the nod went to James Satcher. 

Satcher came out of the gate onto the political scene as a virtual "unknown" with a lofty goal in 2016 in running for the US House; he earned only 19% of the vote. Over the next few years he gained momentum and a reputation as a "developer darling" via political dollars and support from controversial political consultant, Anthony Pedicini. 

During the 2020 Commission race when Satcher bounced a $10 check for certification fees, his political intention was clear: “Manatee county needs more committed conservatives in positions of influence.”  Following his “stunning victory,” he proceeded to bring his personal and political agenda to the dais, so much so, that it was reported that Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody had to intervene at one point. 

Texts with Pedicini on public record show attempts at influencing Satcher's decisions on the dais; these have been characterized as “shady, backroom deals.” His first big decision as SOE was hiring David Ballard, husband of Commissioner Ballard, as his No. 2 person. Like Satcher, Ballard has zero experience in the field, and has additional layers with arrests for DUI's. 

The meritorious selection should have been obvious.

Regardless of party affiliation, this can be rectified, starting with signing and sending a petition by May 9 to the address below. Links and instructions are on Farrington's Facebook page and website, votescottfarrington.com. (Petitions cannot be scanned or emailed.) 

"Meritocracy" is the notion that power is vested in individuals based on ability, performance and achievement. More than ever your votes are important towards this end, not only with this SOE position, but with votes for upcoming open commission seats as well. Let's work towards "meritocracy" in Manatee County at the ballot box in August and November.

Dick and Margie Motzer
Anna Maria Island 

Scott Farrington Campaign
PO Box 825
Ellenton, FL 34222


3 comments on this item

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  • Dianna

    Every citizen who is following the Manatee County government and the newly appointed Supervisor of Elections- Satcher, needs to talk to others in the community and fill them in on the actions of our corrupt officials. Too many people in the community are ignorant of this travesty, especially since the local television media and others are not covering this. Most citizens are probably unaware that should your ballot need to be reviewed – it will be reviewed by the SOE and the commissioner who is appointed as the canvasser. Wonder how many of our votes will not be counted because we don’t agree with their ideology?

    Tuesday, April 30 Report this

  • David Daniels

    Well done, **** and Margie Motzer! This is the kind of grass roots raising of public awareness that we all have a duty to engage in. Write letters to the editor, talk to neighbors and co-workers. Explain county races are not about party, not about Trump/Biden. Informed voters choose merit, and the choices could not be more clear in Manatee County 2024. We have excellent candidates opposing corrupt ones in just about every race.

    Tuesday, April 30 Report this

  • nellmcphillips

    Well said Motzers! This County needs an injection of morals, ethics and experience. Get out and vote!

    Wednesday, May 1 Report this