Moms for Liberty co-founders distance themselves from Bridget Ziegler amid scandal

Herald Tribune | By Steven Walker | December 5, 2023

In a statement sent Tuesday, Moms for Liberty’s co-founders distanced themselves from Bridget Ziegler, another of the organization’s co-founders and current Sarasota County School Board member, following accusations of sexual assault against her husband, Christian Ziegler, by a woman with whom he and Bridget had a three-way sexual relationship.

Former Brevard County School Board member Tina Descovich and former Indian River County School Board member Tiffany Justice, together with Bridget Ziegler, founded Moms for Liberty in January 2021. Moms for Liberty is now a conservative education activist group with more than 120,000 members and almost 300 chapters across 44 states.

Descovich and Justice issued a joint statement Wednesday afternoon reiterating that Bridget Ziegler had resigned from the organization within the same month of its incorporation. The statement came as several local activist groups prepare to rally at an upcoming Sarasota School Board meeting on Dec. 12 to call for Bridget Ziegler’s resignation.

Despite leaving Moms for Liberty, Bridget Ziegler has defended the group. However, she is not listed as one of the founders on the Moms for Liberty website.

Christian Ziegler, while not directly professionally involved with Moms for Liberty, spoke at the organization’s national summit in Philadelphia last summer, advising in a media training session for participants to “Never apologize. Ever”.

What did Bridget Ziegler do?

Bridget Ziegler has not been accused of any wrongdoing and was not under investigation as of Tuesday. In documents relating to the investigation into Christian Ziegler, she told investigators that she and her husband had sex with the alleged victim together one time, a statement corroborated by the alleged victim.

Her statement to investigators indicates a past sexual history with a woman, something that stands as a stark contrast to much of the conservative culture war rhetoric that has often been used toward members of the LGBTQ+ community.

She played a major role in the creation and passing of the Parental Rights in Education Act, often labeled the “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Bridget Ziegler also posted a photo of herself wearing a shirt that said “Real women aren’t men” referencing Bud Light’s sponsorship of a transgender woman and defended herself amid backlash saying it was “insane” people were upset because it was “a fact.”

Sarasota School Board Chairwoman Bridget Ziegler points to a shirt that reads “real women aren’t men”, which she posted to her Twitter account April 2.

While chair of the School Board, she also declined to stop a woman from calling Tom Edwards, the only openly gay member of the board, an “LGBTQ groomer.” At the time, she said personal attacks in public comment happen to elected officials on all sides and that stopping the speaker would have only escalated tensions.

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