Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed District 1 Manatee County Commissioner James Satcher to a new role as Manatee County Supervisor of Elections on Friday.

Satcher will replace longtime Supervisor of Elections Mike Bennett for the remainder of his term. Bennett announced in January that he would retire on March 1. The position will be up for election in November.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve Manatee County in a new role,” Satcher said. “Most of all, I’m thankful to the Lord. I look forward to working hard to make sure that we have secure, free and fair elections.”

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His appointment to the role requires that he resign his seat as District 1’s county commissioner. The vacancy will leave an open seat on the board that will be filled by another appointment by DeSantis.

This year Satcher has also served in leadership roles as chairman of the Manatee Port Authority and the Tourist Development Council. He is also a member of the Coastal and Heartland National Estuary Partnership Policy Commission and the Environmental Lands Management and Acquisition Advisory Committee.

Satcher has become known in the community for his far-right stance against abortion rights, and spearheaded efforts to ban abortion clinics from Manatee County. That effort fell short after Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody advised the county to defer such policies to state policymakers.

He has since remained a strong voice in opposition to abortion rights, including recent calls to delve deeper into the connection between the 211 hotline and Planned Parenthood. The hotline is run by the United Way Suncoast.

“It’s been such an honor to be a part of the commission, it’s just a great group of folks and we have an amazing staff at the county,” Satcher said. “It’s been my privilege to represent Parrish, the rest of District 1 and all of Manatee County.”

This article originally appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: DeSantis appoints James Satcher as Manatee Co. elections supervisor

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