Miami voters overwhelmingly returned suspended Commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones to office Tuesday, setting up a constitutional showdown with the governor's office that will likely play out in the courts.
Gov. Charlie Crist -- who suspended Spence-Jones in November after her arrest on charges of redirecting $50,000 in county funds to a family business -- had vowed to remove her again if she won the special election.
Defiant as she basked in victory before supporters at her Liberty City headquarters, the two-term District 5 commissioner said her easy victory showed that constituents still believed in her. She easily separated from a field of eight others in an election with a dismally low turnout.
Addressing Crist directly, Spence-Jones said: "What we're asking is our votes be respected -- and this is the most disrespecting thing you can do.''