Duval Democratic chair blasts ‘false, inaccurate, slanderous’ case for his removal

Duvaldemchair daniel henry
Duval Democrats continue their infighting.

An earlier version of this piece used “misleading” instead of “inaccurate” in quoting Henry’s response to the grievance. We regret the error. 

Ahead of Monday night’s meeting in which a vote to remove him failed, Duval County’s Democratic Party chair denounced a report from the party’s grievance committee investigating him.

However, a notice issue means that despite the lack of sufficient numbers to remove him, there will be yet another vote on whether the local party should remove its chair headed into statewide elections.

Perhaps one reason why the removal failed was the chairman’s own case for his retention.

“Let me be clear: the accusations alleged in the grievances and the conclusions made by the grievance committees are false, inaccurate, and slanderous. In the spirit of cooperation, I spent a total of 6 hours answering questions and provided 21-pages of detailed responses to both committees,” Daniel Henry said. “It was my hope they would be taken seriously to resolve this matter. However, the grievance committees made no attempts to accept my responses or act in good faith.”

At issue is Henry meeting with a Republican City Council member, a gathering in which the Council member allegedly offered Henry a deal where the chairman’s home would be drawn into Council District 9 so he could run there as a Democrat. Henry says he rejected the offer.

Henry contends the report was rigged against him from the beginning, and that contrary to claims, he has come clean about Rory Diamond, who Henry describes as “an unimportant council member seeking to inflate his power.”

“From the very beginning of both committees’ work, it was clear all semblance of fairness would be nonexistent. Their hearings possessed no due process, committee members parroted unverified claims, and questions seemed focused on establishing my truthfulness,” Henry contended.

Comments throughout Henry’s Saturday email speak to the schisms in the party.

“My concerns about one of the committee’s motivations were later confirmed when I read the first paragraph of its report, where they noted that their mission was to determine the ‘truthfulness and transparency of Chair Henry.’ Not the truthfulness of the claims; not weighing both parties’ intent; not analyzing the required burden of proof of the complainant. Conjecture, gossip, and unsubstantiated falsehoods seem to be more relevant,” Henry wrote.

A second complaint, meanwhile, was heard against Henry’s primary accuser, Council member Garrett Dennis. He was accused of bullying a state committeewoman during one of the many fact-finding conversations in recent months about whatever deal Diamond floated to Henry.

Expect updates as warranted.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at [email protected]


5 comments

  • Concerned Citizen

    May 17, 2021 at 11:53 am

    Well, Chairman Henry is spot on about very shady LGBT City Councilman Rory Diamond: “an unimportant council member seeking to inflate his power.” LOL!

  • Paulo

    May 19, 2021 at 9:34 am

    The grievance against Dennis which passed, was an “insignificant” grievance in Dennis’ mind only!

  • Speed Chialtas

    May 21, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    You failed to put in this story is that there are two grievances against the chair and although one was voted on the second was not. It was discovered in the By-Laws that the proper notice of 10 days to the members for a removal vote was not given. There for it was ruled by the parliamentarian that the meeting was out of order. We will have to reconvene at a later date to properly decide the fate of the DEC Chair. The Chairs claim that the investigation was biased is 100% false. If he is so sure that he has done nothing wrong then why is he holding onto the supporting documents that were included with the report that show everything in that report is fact?

  • JoJoStone

    May 22, 2021 at 12:42 am

    This is so destructive for the party. These things should be worked out internally. We have a massively important election coming up next year and this cat fight is not helping our cause.

    • Speed Chialtas

      May 26, 2021 at 5:27 pm

      It is far from a cat fight. This is about ones honesty and the respect and integrity of the office in which he holds. Over 50% of the DEC has supported the chairs removal. He should do the right thing and step down so the DEC can move forward. If not it will cripple the ability for the DEC to conduct business. I shall leave you with this. The Vice President of the United States avoided meeting with the DEC Chair on her last visit. So if local elected officials wont work with the Chair and the White House wont work with the Chair. His inability to do the right thing for the sake of the party will make the DEC nothing more than a good ole boys/girls club. Thankfully we have many Clubs and Caucus’s that will fill the void he will create.

Comments are closed.


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