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Influential Palm Beach Democrat Endorses DeSantis

“FL cannot afford people like Charlie Crist who wants to defund the police & make our communities less safe,” Dave Kerner wrote on Twitter.

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA — Dave Kerner, Palm Beach County Commissioner and former Palm Beach County Mayor, endorsed Governor Ron DeSantis this week.

Speaking at a press conference at the Police Benevolent Association in West Palm Beach, Kerner stated:  “Every day until November 8th, I will campaign for Governor DeSantis, and on November 8th, I will vote for Governor DeSantis. I will not remain silent. There is too much on the line in this election.”

Kerner continued to say that Crist supports “reallocation,” which he considers to be a code word for taking resources away from law enforcement. “It’s a code word for defunding the police,” he said.

Kerner, who served two terms in the Florida House of Representatives before his election to the county commission, was a police officer in Alachua County from 2004–2007.

“Endorsing Gov. @RonDeSantisFL was the obvious choice this election cycle. Gov. DeSantis’ Dem opponent has called for reallocation of resources away from law enforcement. FL cannot afford people like Charlie Crist who wants to defund the police & make our communities less safe,” Kerner wrote on Twitter.

DeSantis also spoke at the event in front of law enforcement and police supporters. “We are focused on protecting victims and not coddling criminals, and no one knows that better than Dave, who served Florida’s communities. Commissioner Kerner knows first-hand the threat of the ‘defund the police’ movement and understands the important role that our local law enforcement officers play in keeping Florida safe,” the governor said.

Palm Beach County is the third-most-populous county in Florida. In 2020, President Joe Biden won close to 56 percent of the votes in the county, according to election data.

Crist, who was the governor of Florida between 2007 and 2011, was a member of the Republican Party before he became an independent in 2010. He later switched to the Democratic Party in 2012 before he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives as a Democrat in 2016.