Florida state Senator to retire in wake of controversial remark

Author: Associated Press
Published: Updated:
Gwen Margolis

MIAMI (AP) – State Sen. Gwen Margolis is retiring instead of seeking re-election to her South Florida seat, ending a political career spanning more than 40 years.

The 81-year-old Democrat announced her decision in an email to media Thursday.

It came days after the Miami Herald reported she had dismissed her five opponents as “three Haitians, some teacher and some lawyer” during a meeting with local Democrats. Party leaders demanded an apology, but she has not done so.

Margolis describes her four decades of public service as a “remarkable journey.” In 1990, she became the first female Senate president and served as chairwoman of the Miami-Dade Commission. She will retire in November.

Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Allison Tant said Margolis “shattered glass ceilings” and that “her leadership will be missed in the Florida Senate.”

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