Al Lawson Considers Challenge To Corrine Brown In Revamped District 5

Aug 20, 2015

Former Sen. Al Lawson mulls challenge to Congresswoman Corrine Brown.
Credit Sascha Cordner / WFSU News

Former North Florida Senator Al Lawson is considering a third Congressional bid. A proposed map of the Fifth Congressional district—which encompasses Jacksonville and parts of Leon County-- could give Lawson an opening.

Al Lawson represented Leon and Gadsden County in the Florida legislature for more than 20 years. He challenged former U.S. Senator Steve Southerland for District 2 twice but narrowly lost both times.  Under a proposed map Lawson could be placed in a new, more favorable district—a revamped Congressional District 5 currently occupied by longtime Congresswoman Corrine Brown. She’s fighting to keep the current North-South configuration of the seat—and claims if it’s changed to run from Jacksonville to Tallahassee—it won’t elect an African American.

“It’s about drawing districts that put communities of interest together. Jacksonville Florida has nothing in common with North Florida," she said during a recent press conference in Orlando.

But Lawson says that’s not true. And while he’s known Congresswoman Brown for years, he believes it may be time for some changes in District Five.

“I think sometimes it’s an opportunity for change and different leadership. When you represent this area up in North Florida, you know, it’s slightly different from representing Central Florida and a portion of Duval.”

Lawson says he’ll decide whether to run after the maps are finalized and a decision could come later this year.