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2016 state House races - page 3

Email insights: Sarasota GOP: Democrat Edward James a “major threat” in HD 72

in Statewide/Top Headlines by
JAMES

The Sarasota GOP is beginning to worry about Democrat Edward James III‘s challenge to Rep. Ray Pilon, according to a recent fundraising appeal sent to local Republicans. The email, penned by county party chairman and RPOF vice chairman Joe Gruters, said James’ so-far prodigious fundraising efforts pose a serious challenge to Republicans’ dominance in the region’s legislative districts. “This is a major threat to the Republican seat and demonstrates that Democrats are serious about trying to turn back Republican control in Tallahassee,” wrote Gruters. “If…

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Ray Pilon raises $6,850 in November for HD 72 re-election campaign

in The Bay and the 'Burg by

Rep. Ray Pilon took in a moderate haul last month in his campaign to retain his Sarasota-based House seat, raising $6,850 during the November reporting period according to recently submitted campaign finance data. The contributions take the third-term Republican to $96,275 raised overall so far, with $66,438 of that remaining on hand. Pilon, a Sarasota County commissioner from 1996 to 2000, has represented the moderate-leaning HD 72 seat since defeating former Democratic Rep. Keith Fitzgerald during the 2010 midterm elections. This cycle, Pilon faces a Democratic…

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Gaming out the Broward County state Senate races

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With the Florida Supreme Court choosing the plaintiff’s map in the congressional redistricting fight, conventional wisdom (says that those same plaintiffs have a distinct advantage moving their Senate maps through Judge Reynolds’ court. And all of the plaintiffs’ maps are identical in Broward County. So how does that shake out, assuming one of the plaintiff maps is ultimately the one, for those who have been publicly eyeing those seats? For Perry Thurston and Gwyn Clarke-Reed, there really was never any suspense. There was…

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Edward James raises $81,150 for November in Sarasota House race

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Recording a fundraising haul that could mark a turning point in the race for a Sarasota-based swing seat, Democrat Edward James took in $81,150 during the November reporting period, according to just-filed finance data. The windfall takes James to $166,663 raised overall, with $114,400 of that coming from a political committee supporting James called New Direction Florida. James currently has $149,701 cash on hand between those funds and his campaign account. James is seeking to oust Republican Rep. Ray Pilon, first elected in 2010, in…

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Black bear activist Chuck O’Neal announces HD 29 run

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Sunday afternoon, real estate investor and black bear activist Chuck O’Neal announced his intention to run for Florida House District 29, surrounded by friends and family in downtown Orlando. O’Neal made the announcement at a memorial held to mourn and raise awareness of the 300 black bears killed the previous weekend during a hunt authorized by the Florida Wildlife Commission to reduce the species’ population. “We had a memorial service for the Florida black bear and had several hundred people to pay homage…

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Ivette Gonzalez files to challenge Manny Diaz in HD 103

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A Democrat has filed to challenge incumbent Hialeah Republican Manny Diaz for the Florida House District 103 seat. Coral Gables attorney Ivette Gonzalez filed for the seat Monday and is the only candidate running against Diaz as he shoots for a third term in the House. Gonzalez is a criminal defense attorney and has run her own law firm since 2010. Prior to entering private practice, the St. Thomas University School of Law graduate worked as an assistant state attorney for the Miami-Dade State…

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House Democrats hire Steve Jackson as political director

in 2017/Top Headlines by

The Florida Democratic Party’s House Victory division — responsible for recruiting, directing and fundraising for Democratic state House campaigns — has hired Steve Jackson to fill the new role of political director. As first reported in the Tampa Bay Times, the move was announced by incoming Minority Leader-designate state Rep. Janet Cruz of Tampa. Jackson comes to the party by way of Obama for America — the president’s campaign apparatus known for mostly bypassing state Democratic parties on its way to victory in 2008…

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