Florida party leaders weigh in on Jeffrey Epstein conspiracies
Jeffrey Epstein’s death looked more like murder than suicide, says a prominent forensics expert.

“What’re we to think here?”

News of accused sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein’s death by suicide Saturday instantly fed conspiracy theories online.

Leaders in both Florida’s Republican and Democratic parties quickly jumped into the conversation.

Christian Ziegler, vice chair of the Republican Party of Florida, posted a meme of former President Bill Clinton with the words “In Clinton world, ‘Suicide Watch’ means ‘Watch Suicide.’ ”

“I mean…is it even debatable at this point?” Ziegler wrote.


A couple hours later, Florida Democratic Party Executive Director Juan Peñalosa wrote his own post, mentioning President Donald Trump.

“Feds were supervising his suicide watch/ He’d trafficked women for powerful men/ Had ties to @POTUS, other world leaders/ He’d named names, was expected to name more/ Did I mention he was under fed supervision? What’re we to think here?” Peñalosa wrote.


Of course, both Trump and Clinton have been connected to Epstein in their private lives, as noted by The Guardian.

Both also have seen details of their own sex lives make headlines, though not for crimes as extraordinary as those for which Epstein was in custody.

Neither Ziegler nor Peñalosa said their tweets should be read as accusations.

Peñalosa took issue with a post by this reporter characterizing his tweet as an inference.


“As a journalist, you should not put words in my mouth,” he said. “I did not infer that POTUS murdered anyone. Please don’t say that I did.”

He maintained his original tweet as “very clear.” He did add a comment to the original post stating “for anyone who thinks I am endorsing or inferring a POTUS/GOP murder conspiracy, I am not.”

As for Ziegler, he said his tweet was a joke. But he says he’s interested to hear more facts on how Epstein could die days after another attempted suicide while in custody.

“Who knows, just crazy,” he said. “How does a guy on suicide watch die of suicide? Will be interesting to see the facts come out…

“Not sure how it’s possible. Gross incompetence or worse.”

Other Florida leaders in both political parties also issued comments, but focused on Epstein escaping prosecution by hanging himself. Sen. Rick Scott, a Republican, labeled Epstein a “coward” while state Sen. Lauren Book, a Democrat, promised justice “will not be denied.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected]


  • Edward Garrison

    August 11, 2019 at 12:14 am

    Christian Ziegler is a crook and a con man. I am a Sarasota Republican and have seen him along with a couple other felons destroy our local party over the past decade or two. Surely you could find a Republican spokesman who doesn’t paint all Republicans as complete wingnuts?

  • IvyWerner

    August 11, 2019 at 3:59 am

    We all know how tricky journalists can tie politics to absolutely any news. But in this case, I would like to figure it out, because I don’t really want us to be ruled by hypocritical pedophiles. Imagine that Epstein was not a coward, for example, he was simply removed. Many who would not want him to continue talking. It seems to me at some point the pressure has grown so much that no one could have helped this person. And if you cannot crush anything in return for silence, then you will not have to keep silent.

  • Sonja Fitch

    August 11, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    Fact Epstein Court Document prove Trump made numerous trips to Epsteins pedophile island.
    Fact 1994 Court Documents Trump raped 13 year old girl at Epsteins NY Apartment. Trump,Clinton,Dershowitz and AG Barr are in on the Conspiracy of aiding and abetting a known pedophile. This reeks of rich white filth!

Comments are closed.


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