Commissioner Eddington Loses Cool During Board Meeting

Posted on June 5, 2023 by Romi White

Environmental Activist Carmen Reynolds, pictured at the podium during today’s commission meeting, joined around a half dozen Democrats and a few other citizens who spoke out in favor of Democrats.
***WARNING: This article quotes Eddington verbatim and, therefore, includes an expletive***
Santa Rosa County District 4 Commissioner Ray Eddington lost decorum during Monday’s county commission meeting, using profanity to express his frustration with District 3 Commissioner James Calkins’ statements about the Florida Democratic Party.
“This shit has got to stop,” Eddington said after roughly an hour of public forum in which Democratic Party, Recall Florida Activists and others spoke out in support of Democrats. Eddington stated he will work with members of all parties.
The speakers were triggered after District 3 Commissioner James Calkins, during a May 25 board meeting, refused to support the appointment of a Democrat to a County Advisory Board, stating he preferred to appoint a Republican instead. 
Sharon Hawthone asked Calkins to resign. “I was once a Democrat,” she said, stating she left the party over her objection to abortion. She also said she plans to file an ethics complaint against Calkins. 
“First I’d like to say I appreciate all speakers who came up here to speak,” said Calkins, praising the First Amendment. “This is America.” Calkins then went on to say that he stands behind his May 25 statements. “I believe the Florida Democratic platform is evil,” Calkins said, stating the party supports the “murder of innocent babies.” Calkins clarified that he was voicing objection to the Democratic party, not individual Democrats. “I support our employees no matter what party they are, and I support military no matter what party they are.”


District 2 Commissioner Kerry Smith, who had nominated a Democrat for a county advisory board, reacted to Calkins’ statement, stating “It’s the most ridiculous form of persuasion I’ve ever seen in my life…I’m sorry I’m so angry.”

District 5 Commissioner Colten Wright said he’s spent the last week stewing over Calkins’ comments. “He went through a half-ass apology and then decided to double down,” Wright said, stating that Jesus Christ didn’t talk about fire and brimstone.