2018 elections

Ken Detzner
Florida Memory - State Library & Archives of Florida

Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner is advising those who intend to run for office that they can begin submitting their paperwork now.

(left to right) Orlando businessman Chris King, former North Florida Congresswoman Gwen Graham, former Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine, andTallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum met in Tampa for their first gubernatorial debate.
Fox News 13 Screenshot

The need for gun reform is top of mind for the four Democratic candidates running for Governor. They discussed that during their first televised debate.

In front of a campaign sign, Geoff McConnell is with his wife
Geoff McConnell Campaign Facebook page

Following the results of a close race between political novices this week, the Panama City beach Council will swear in a new member.

Tom Flanigan

The ballot facing Florida voters this year keeps getting longer. Leon County’s top elections official worried that could cause voter fatigue well before Election Day.

Rep. Matt Caldwell, R-Lehigh Acres, debates on the House floor May. 5 2017.
Florida House of Representatives

Florida voters will be asked in November whether to automatically restore voting rights to felons who have completed their sentences. This comes as the state clemency board has been ordered to revise its process for restoring rights. Now some state candidates are weighing in.

Dustin Daniels speaks in the Tallahassee City Commission Chamber (undated)
Dustin Daniels / facebook.com

The race for Tallahassee Mayor is seeing a growing list of potential candidates and another may soon be jumping in. Dustin Daniels, chief of staff to Mayor Andrew Gillum, has released a video suggesting he too may be eyeing the seat.

With County Commissioner John Dailey now in the race to be Tallahassee’s next mayor, two City Commission candidates have dropped their bids and look to fill Dailey’s vacant seat.

jvoves/ flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/jvoves/

The Florida Senate stalled a plan to ban sanctuary cities this week. But the debate around immigration enforcement is alive and well in the statehouse.

redjar via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/redjar/

This November Floridians will decide whether felons should get their voting rights back. After activists gathered over one million petitions, the constitutional amendment has qualified for the 2018 ballot. The state currently disenfranchises about 1.6 million people, almost 10% of the voting age population.

Shaw Announces Attorney General Candidacy

Jan 16, 2018
Davondra Alston / WFSU-FM

Sean Shaw is the first Democrat to announce a run for Florida Attorney General in 2018.

Rontel Batie via facebook / https://www.facebook.com/rontel.batie

Two young Democrats are challenging North Florida Congressman Al Lawson for his District 5 seat, which covers portions of the eastern Panhandle from Tallahassee to Jacksonville.

Ross Spano's twitter

State Representative Ross Spano is the latest Republican to enter the 2018 race for Florida Attorney General.

jvoves/ flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/jvoves/

Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, shutting down the island’s roads and power systems, leaving many isolated and in the dark. Now thousands are evacuating the U.S. territory for the mainland. Many may settle in Florida’s purple counties ahead of the 2018 elections.

Florida Channel

The 2018 Governor’s race could lead to Florida’s Senate Budget Chairman and House Speaker squaring off against each other in the primary. But, for now, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran says he does not think the campaign trail will affect the legislature’s handling of the upcoming year’s budget.

Joe Brusky via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/40969298@N05/13301353274/

Whether they know it or not, Florida taxpayers are funding certain statewide political campaigns. Supporters say the practice promotes diversity at the ballot box. But now the speaker of the house is taking aim at the system. Here's a look at who is actually benefiting from public financing.

Thomas Hawk via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk/

Florida’s Speaker of the House wants to the state to stop funding political campaigns with taxpayer money. But an election law expert says public financing is vital to diversifying the ballot.

Rep. Alexander and Sen. Montford (3rd and 4th from right) with local officials.
Nick Evans

Four counties in North Florida are forming what’s known as a freight logistics zone to improve the region’s chances for state infrastructure dollars.  Officials believe it’s an important step toward growing jobs. 

Bryan Jones via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/bwjones/albums

Florida’s campaign to restore voting rights to felons is gathering national media attention, and national financing. Now activists are trying to focus that energy to get the proposed constitutional amendment on the 2018 ballot. WFSU reports on the grassroots campaign to gather 1 million signatures before the end of the year.

Phil Ehr speaking at a campaign event.
Phil Ehr campaign Facebook page

Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz has a challenger for the 2018 election.  A retired naval officer has filed for the Democratic nomination.

The Village Square / http://tlh.villagesquare.us/

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum says he’ll fully cooperate with an FBI investigation of a series of businesses and developers with ties to City Hall.

Mayor Gillum says the FBI approached him days ago about its probe into a number of redevelopment deals in the city. Gillum says he was assured he is not the focus of the investigation. 

Bryan Jones via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/bwjones/albums

Leon County could see future tax hikes and the phase out of the downtown Community Redevelopment Agency, if a proposed increase in the homestead tax exemption is approved. County commissioners are bracing for the constitutional amendment advanced by state lawmakers.

Florida Supreme Court
Nick Evans

The Florida League of Women Voters is asking the state Supreme Court to weigh in on a decades-old legal dispute: when a justice’s term ends at the same time as the sitting governor, who appoints a replacement? 

Sen. Jeremy Ring (D-Margate)
The Florida Channel

A Democratic former lawmaker is officially running to be the state’s next chief financial officer.

Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine mulls a statewide run.
WLRN.org

The Florida Democratic party may be fractured right now, but there’s no shortage of potential gubernatorial candidates. Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine says he’s considering a statewide run.

BISNOW / https://www.bisnow.com/archives/newsletter/local-real-estate/miami/7732-the-developer-whos-about-to-transform-lincoln-road

The Florida Democratic Party is scrambling to find a new leader in the wake of the 2016 elections. After some last-minute maneuvering, a group of contenders is emerging.