House Democratic Leader Ron Saunders relationship with Republican legislators, the former RPOF Chairman Jim Greer, and with right-wing donors has been discussed in some detail on this website the past several days. Now Republican Holly Raschein who served as Saunders top staffer during the majority of his time in House leadership (in his second stint in the House) has announced the unanimous support of the GOP leadership.
From Raschein’s release:
“Holly Raschein, Republican candidate for House District 120, announced the unanimous support of the incoming, senior member Republicans of the Florida House of Representatives including RepresentativeMarti Coley, Representative Eddy Gonzalez, Representative Doug Holder, Representative Ed Hooper, Representative Seth McKeel, Representative Peter Nehr, Representative Bryan Nelson, Representative Jimmy Patronis, Representative Steve Precourt and Representative Robert Schenck.
“Holly is a bright, hard-working and capable person ready to make a positive impact in the Florida Legislature. We have seen her work tirelessly on issues that are important to the Keys and South Florida. We think District 120 would benefit with Holly Raschein as their Representative,” said the senior house members in a joint statement.
“I am honored to receive the endorsements of these fine public servants,” said Raschein. ”It is a tremendous boost for our campaign. I have had the opportunity to work with them and to learn from them during my years of service as the Legislative Aide for District 120, and look forward to continuing that public service in the Florida House. While the Legislature works for the greater good of our state, representatives truly work for the constituents who sent them to Tallahassee, just as I have worked – and will work – for the constituents of Monroe and southern Miami-Dade County. I thank each of them for their support.”
Holly Raschein has worked as the Legislative Aide for her State House District 120 since 2003. Her husband, Ryan, is a small business owner and they are raising their son Drake in Key Largo. Holly serves the community on boards and committees as Chair of the Florida Keys Healthy Start Coalition, as Board Secretary of Leadership Monroe County, Vice Chair of the Florida Keys Area Health Education Center, Vice President of the Upper Keys Business and Professional Women, and is a Board Member of the Key Largo Community Preservation Foundation.”
Clearly working with Rep. Saunders as he made deals to compromise the values of the Democratic Party and reinforce that Florida’s minority party does not particularly care about creating a vibrant debate or alternative ideas furthered Raschein’s ability to befriend the leadership of the GOP. Additionally, Saunders almost surely called in some favors to obtain these endorsements for Raschein who is in a competitive Republican primary.
Democrat Ian Whitney, an excellent candidate awaits the Republican nominee in November. This is a district that both Barack Obama and Alex Sink carried.
Saunders has his own primary, a five way one for Senate District 39. The Political Hurricane has endorsed Rep. Dwight Bullard in that race. Democratic Primary voters in Senate District 39 need to be aware of Saunders willingness to trade the beliefs of his party so easily for political gain. Democracy only works when you have a vibrant debate on the issues, and in the case of Florida’s Democrats, they continue to compromise Democracy in favor of self interest and preservation.