Late Summer 2013 Elections Update & Cabinet Races

Elections Update

Mike Hill, founder and president of the Northwest Florida Tea Party and a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, won a special election in June to represent Pensacola in House District 2. A special election was held after the passing of State Representative Clay Ford, who served the district from 2007 through 2013. Representative Hill will serve as the only African-American Republican legislator.

Representative Dan Davis (R-Jacksonville) will not seek re-election in 2014 when his term expires. He was selected by local party officials in 2010 to fill the seat left vacant by former Lieutenant Governor Jennifer Carroll. Davis was hired in May to be the president and CEO of JAX Chamber.  Paul Renner, an attorney with Milam Howard in Jacksonville, has filed to run for District 15 as a Republican.

Governor Rick Scott appointed Representative Mike Fasano as Pasco County’s Tax Collector on August 5, leaving his seat open.  A primary election is set for September 17th and the special election for October 15th. Three Republicans have thrown their hat into the ring: New Port Richey Republicans Jeromy Harding, Bill Gunter and James Mathieu. Democrat Amanda Murphy and No-Party Affiliation candidate Richard Thomas Spokes have also filed to run for District 36.

Cabinet Races

All four members of Florida’s Cabinet are running for re-election in 2014. As of this writing, twenty-one candidates have filed paperwork to replace Governor Scott. Of these candidates, five are Republican, four are Democrats, nine are No Party Affiliation, two are Libertarian, and one is a Socialist.  The most prominent current opponent is former Senator Nan Rich, a Democrat from Weston.

Thad Hamilton, a Democrat from Sunrise, will challenge Agricultural Commissioner Adam Putnam.  Hamilton currently serves on the Broward Soil and Water Conservation District Board.

CFO Jeff Atwater’s sole opponent, Allie Braswell, dropped out of the race four days after declaring her candidacy once revelations of multiple bankruptcy filings surfaced.

No one has yet filed to run against Attorney General Pam Bondi, but George Sheldon, a U.S. Health & Human Services official, former Department of Children & Families Secretary and former member of the Florida House of Representatives, has hinted he may join the race.

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