Congressional District 5 Race Gets Crowded As Congresswoman Brown Fights Changes

Dec 21, 2015

Credit LHatter / WFSUNews

The crowd of potential candidates for the Florida's 5th Congressional District in the panhandle is getting bigger.  But current representative Corrine Brown says se's staying put and plans to continue her legal opposition to the redesigned District Five.

Brown filed a federal lawsuit in July after the court ruled her district violates Florida’s Fair Districts amendment, which prohibits drawing boundaries to protect an incumbent or political party.

Brown’s attorney, Noel Lawrence says she is not backing down from the fight, and discounts talk she may move to Orlando and run for re-election in a different district.

“She’s defending CD5 to run north-south and she’s going to go all the way to the Supreme Court if she has to," he said.

Lawrence says the Congresswoman is also asking the court to stop the new district from being used in next year’s election. A status hearing on Brown’s federal lawsuit will likely be held in January.

Meanwhile a number of people have expressed interest running for the seat.  Former Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, former state Senator Tony Hill and current Senator Audrey Gibson have all been labeled as potential candidates. On the Tallahassee side of the map is Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, who says he’s thinking about it:

“I have no plans to run. But I am absolutely listening and having conversations with folks and will have a complete announcement around my intentions next year.”

The new configuration of District Five is east-to-west, from Tallahassee to Jacksonville. Former state Senator Al Lawson has already declared his candidacy for the job. Lawson will file his paperwork in January.