This is a message to the Florida Democratic Party, particularly Chairwoman Allison Tant, incoming Democratic House leader Janet Cruz, outgoing Democratic House leader Mark Pafford, Director of House Victory Dan Newman, and everyone else who is responsible for recruiting Democratic candidates for the Florida House of Representatives in the State of Florida, as well as Juan Rafael Lopez Sanchez and the rest of the Orange County Democratic Executive Committee.
So, I haven’t written much since I announced, jokingly, that I was going to run for the Florida House of Representatives in District 44. This is a district that I consider home, if I lived in Florida. However, I just spend the last two years living in Montreal and have returned to Illinois to work on a campaign for the 2016 election. Yes, I am not working on my campaign, I am working on an entirely different campaign, in an entirely different state.
By this time, I was expecting the Florida Democratic Party or, at minimum, the Orange County Democratic Party, to actually recruit someone to run in House District 44. However, I still remain the only Democratic candidate running for the district, which is simply mind-blowing!
The reason I initially announced that I was running for the House in this district was because there should be at least one Democrat running for this seat. In 2012, Mitt Romney only won 53% of the vote in the district. Democrats, such as Bill Nelson, Bill Cowles, and Jerry Demings actually won the district. In fact, it is about as much of a “swing district” as you can get.
Fast-forward to 2016. Donald Trump is the nominee of the Republican Party. With there being a lack of any viable third-party option for fiscally-conservative Republicans, all of the Republican candidates at every level are now stuck with Trump. In Florida, Hillary continues to beat Trump. And as the election nears, I am confident that Hillary will start pulling away from Trump in the Sunshine State.
With this election dynamic, and the Democrats looking at historic wins, the Florida Democratic Party should run candidates in every seat possible. In Canada, this is exactly what they do. Take Alberta for example, which is the most conservative province in Canada. The New Democratic Party, which is a center-left party, pulled off one of the biggest election upsets in North American political history. However, because of the parliamentary system, the NDP needed to have candidates in every single district (or ridings as they call them in Canada). The Democrats in Florida need to approach politics in the same way. Most voters vote because of the top of the ticket. But if there are no Democratic candidates lower down the ticket, the Florida Democratic Party will miss a golden opportunity.
Of course, some people say “well, the Republicans will just win it again in 2018”. Are you sure? The new dynamic of the Republican Party, a party based on ethno-nationalist sentiment, might start seeing the beginning-of-the-end in a highly diverse state like Florida. Therefore, don’t count out anything.
Besides the Trump phenomenon being a blessing for the Democrats in Florida, my opponent, Eric Eisnaugle, has raised NO MONEY in the last three months. In February, he did a waiver, and in March and April he recorded no funds coming in. Any of you who know politics knows that incumbent politicians usually receive donations even when they do ask for them. Mr. Eisnaugle not raising any money whatsoever these last three months should be something that is looked at very seriously. Again, the demographics are there for Democrats to make this a competitive seat. The election dynamics are also there for Democrats. And if Mr. Eisnaugle is not going to be raising any money, and is on the outs with his political party, then that is even another opportunity for the Florida Democratic Party.
Yet, nothing has happened. I look at the Division of Elections website every few days and see that I am still the only candidate running against Eric Eisnaugle.
So, Florida Democratic Party, what are your intentions? If you want to pay my filing fee, feel free to do so. Mr. Newman, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me the check is in the mail. That will require Eric Eisnaugle to use his $94,000 against me instead of against other Democrats. But I surely do hope, for everyone’s sake, that the Florida Democratic Party is actually trying to recruit a candidate for this district which, I cannot stress enough, can flip during this particular election!
While I am a person that knows the issues facing the State of Florida, and can easily take down Mr. Eisnaugle in a debate regarding the issues (let’s face it, Speaker Crisafulli has given us more than enough ammunition, just like Donald Trump), we need a candidate that can run an effective campaign. I am the first to admit that I am not the best candidate for this race. Why? Because I don’t live in the damn district!
So, Florida Democrats, House Victory, Chairwoman Allison Tant, Director Dan Newman, I am begging you to find a candidate to run in this district. Just pick someone, anyone. Ask the next guy walking down the Bronough St. if they are interested in running for the position. I mean, seriously, anyone! And just so you know, I will not be paying a filing fee, and I cannot get 1,010 signatures in the next eight days. And, it’s been 150 days since I “announced”. So please, do something!
Over the last few weeks, the Florida Democratic Party has been telling the U.S. Senate to “do their job” regarding the approval of Justice Garland. Ever wonder what the definition of a paradox was….there you go! Please, Florida Democrats and House Victory…do your job!