The Florida mayor of Lantana has been accused by the Florida Commission on Ethics of violating state statutes. The Commission found probable cause that the mayor, David Stewart, used or attempted to use his position to secure a personal benefit by soliciting a constituent with the understanding that his official actions would be influenced.
A Florida resident alleged he told her he would make sure her neighborhood got the speed bumps she had applied for, if she had sex with him. She rejected his advances. He faces punishment ranging from a reprimand to suspension and removal from office. Civil penalties could be as high as $10,000 per violation.
After the town installed the speed bumps, the woman claims Stewart told her that if she didn't have sex with him to "thank him" for the speed bumps, he would have them removed. "Moron of the Morning: Mayor trades sex for speed bumps" norfolkdailynews.com (Nov. 01, 2018).
So, the question for our readers is: What do you think of the mayor's conduct?
Please let us know what you think in the comment section or take the poll. Here are some opinions of some of the McCalmon editorial staff:
Jack McCalmon, Esq.
Sexual coercion comes in many forms. Although this is not sexual harassment under Title VII because no employment relationship exists, it is a sexual barter much like quid pro quo harassment. Obviously, if true, the mayor's actions are reprehensible. For employers, especially those that work with the public or with vulnerable people, these types of claims leave organizations open to liability.
Leslie Zieren, Esq.
Government officials work for all citizens. They should not engage in corrupt activities to benefit themselves by abusing the power of their office. If the Commission, which already found probable cause exists, ultimately finds mayor did indeed misuse his office for personal gain, then he should be removed from office. There are plenty of ethical people who could serve the citizens of Lantana.
You can provide a comment on what you would do or answer our poll. Please note any comments provided may be shared with others.