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Latvala 'Temporarily' Removed As Budget Chief After Sexual Harassment Accusations

Sen. Jack Latvala (R-Clearwater)
Nick Evans

Sen. Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater,  has been temporarily removed from his powerful position as Senate Appropriations Chairman. The senator is fighting back anonymous claims of sexual harassment.

Gov.Rick Scott says if the claims against Latvala are true the Senator should step down. However, Latvala is maintaining he is not going anywhere and has stated he belief the sexual harassment claims against him are politically motivated.

Senate President Joe Negron has launched an independent investigation into the claims. Negron on Monday ordered Sen. Republican Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, to take over as chairman of the Appropriations Committee saying in a statement that “it is in the best interest for another senator to temporarily serve” during the investigation.

The move comes after Politico Florida published the claims of six anonymous women who accuse Latvala of groping them and making comments about their physical appearance.