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Another ally of Jack Latvala – Rep. Kathleen Peters – contemplating running for CD 13

By on November 10, 2013
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State Senator Jack Latvala seems determined to find someone — anyone — to run against David Jolly in the GOP primary in the Special Election for Congressional District 13. The latest possible candidate? State Rep. Kathleen Peters, a longtime ally of Sen. Latvala.

Peters name emerged on Sunday after Sheriff Bob Gualtieri and former Clearwater mayor Frank Hibbard — both Latvala allies — decided against running. Latvala has said publicly that he would prefer someone else other than Jolly.

“I really don’t think the timing is right for a Washington lobbyist to move to our district and run for Congress,” Latvala recently told the Tampa Bay Times. “I will guarantee you there will be another candidate besides him.”

That candidate may be Peters.

Peters told the Tampa Bay Business Journal that she had received “a lot of encouragement” to enter the race, saying she discussed the possibility with people from all over the county — including business and community leaders.

The freshman South Pasadena Republican also consulted her team of advisers, the same people who helped her succeed in House District 69, without disclosing exactly whom they may be.

“The key questions are, is there strength in the bunch for me to have that position? Do we have that ability in a short time to raise the change we need to print such a attack,” Peters told Muellner, “and is it the perfect fit for me and my family?”

Among the considerations is that Peters will most likely face Democratic former Florida CFO Alex Sink, who entered the race last week, forcing St. Petersburg attorney Jessica Ehrlich to drop out.

Crediting Gov. Rick Scott and the GOP-led Legislature with moving the state out of the Great Recession, Peters sees the run for Congress as one closely connected to the business community.

“The truth is, we are rebuilding our economy and things are going in in Washington, and there’s resentment, and we don’t feel we have control over things between the flood insurance and other issues happening there that will impact business and our way of life,” Peters said. “We need someone well connected to the economics of Pinellas County and Florida to ensure that a way of life continues.”

Peters says she will make a decision this week.

Disclosure: Peters is a client of Extensive Enterprises, which also owns Extensive Enterprises Media, the Limited Liability Company  which owns the rights to this blog.