Seven new candidates declare in Florida

Ballotpedia tracked seven new state-level candidates in Florida between Sept. 25 and Oct. 1. This was seven more candidates than the prior week. 

Four of those candidates are Democrats and three are Republicans.  The seven candidates are running for state legislature in 2024.

Details on five of these candidates are below:

  • Sheria Griffin (D) is running for Florida State Senate District 3. Griffin said, “[I am] a dedicated Tallahassee resident and advocate for citizens in Leon and surrounding counties. [I have] a background in education and ha[ve] worked as an educator for 13 years. Currently, [I] serve[ ] as the Executive Director representing public educators in the Central Panhandle region. [I am] passionate about finding common ground and prioritizing the needs of the people over political affiliations. [I] believe[ ] in empowering citizens to actively participate in democracy and work towards a better future for Florida.”
  • Kimblin Nesmith (D) is running for Florida State Senate District 3. Nesmith said, “My campaign is committed to making sure the public receives both transparency and a higher quality of life. Economic Development and Resiliency – Communities thrive when opportunities exist for people to work. Transparency – is required by ‘the people’ in order to understand the resources that are available to enhance their quality of life. Our campaign is committed to making sure the public receives both; and TOGETHER WE WIN! Democracy works best when the public, those that comprise the government, are able to voice their opportunities to improve their communities to their representatives, those elected to serve.”
  • Derek Reich (D) is running for Florida House of Representatives District 73. Reich said, “I was born and raised here, and my family has owned a small business 40 years. This community is my soul. We need someone speaking up for the community on every issue, and not someone who just sees this as a stepping stone to Vern Buchanan’s congressional seat.”
  • Lisette Bonano (R) is running for Florida House of Representatives District 67. Bonano said, “… My courage, strength, and resilience come from a life growing up with the deep-rooted values of our military family. … Having grown up overseas and having served in diverse areas, I know how to listen, appreciate, and relate to people of all backgrounds, colors, and creeds. … I am more than ready to use my life experiences and leadership skills to serve the people of Hillsborough County. I will always listen to your concerns and fight for your needs and those of your families.”
  • Anne Gerwig (R) is running for Florida House of Representatives District 93. Gerwig said, “… As a 33-year resident of the district, I have been an education advocate, a successful small business owner and also served our community on numerous state, county, and local boards and committees. No other candidate has the experience I have representing the district. I am running for State Representative to bring my many years of knowledge and experience representing District 93 to Tallahassee.”

Since the beginning of the year, Ballotpedia has identified 71 candidates for state-level office in Florida. Five hundred and eighty-five candidates ran for state-level office in Florida in 2022, while 520 ran in 2020. In 2022, 238 were Democratic, while 276 were Republican. In 2020, 266 were Democratic and 194 were Republican. Nationally, Ballotpedia has tracked 673 Democrats and 828 Republicans running for state-level office in 2023, and 189 Democrats and 236 Republicans running in 2024. 

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