The Broward Sun Sentinel has pulled an about face and after months of backing Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, the paper now says it agrees with the GOP that the man in charge during the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting needs to be removed from office.
In an unexpected editorial published on Wednesday, the paper insisted that the “failed leadership of Broward Sheriff Scott Israel” is enough to have him removed from office and that the paper’s editorial board now agrees with Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis that Israel must go.
As Daily Wire noted:
“It’s a big deal for a governor to remove an elected sheriff, especially if the governor is a Republican and the sheriff is the most powerful Democrat in Florida’s most Democratic county,” the Sun Sentinel editorial board states. But after reviewing a draft of the state commission’s report on the shooting, the editors have concluded that Israel simply cannot be allowed to stay in office.
“[A] community of our size is going to face another tragedy,” the editors conclude. “It’s just a matter of where and when. And if we do not learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it. Given Sheriff Israel’s failure to learn from history — and his failures during our community’s most horrific events — we now stand with those who believe he should be removed and replaced.”
The paper notes that it has supported Israel repeatedly in the past. It also pointed out that the unions supported him, but that was “largely because of pay raises.”
The paper says that they have maintained that people need to wait until there is more proof about Israel’s behavior.
But now, the paper thinks some of that proof is in evidence:
“But after seeing the damning details in the commission’s draft report — and Israel’s troubling testimony — we cannot encourage the governor-elect to wait and let voters decide the sheriff’s fate in 2020,” they wrote.
The paper then adds that the report suggests that the sheriff has not acted in the interests of public safety.
On that issue, the paper says, “Israel has come up short. Worse, the sheriff fails to accept responsibility for things that have gone wrong, instead suggesting that things couldn’t have been better. If he fails to acknowledge that mistakes were made — not only by individuals, but by his command — how can we expect a better outcome next time?”
The paper then goes on to lay out the findings in the report showing just how bad Israel has acted.
In any case, it is startling to see the same paper that backed Israel to the hilt suddenly doing an about face and convicting him in its editorial pages.
But if the liberal paper has lost faith in Sheriff Israel, that says loads about his fate.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.