Not just Crist vs. Scott: 16 running for governor

Dozens file as candidates for state offices on final day of qualifying

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - While Florida's primary election is just over two months away, there was a flurry of campaign activity at the Florida Secretary of State Office on Friday as candidates seeking state and local offices faced a noon Friday deadline to qualify.

One of the last candidates to file was Monroe Lee, who joins five other write-in candidates for governor.  While Republican Gov. Rick Scott appears to already be campaigning against presumptive Democratic nominee, former Gov. Charlie Crist, a total of 16 candidates qualified in the governor's race: three Republicans, three Democrats, three independents and a Libertarian candidate in addition to the six write-ins.

Former State Sen. Nan Rich -- the second Democrat who will be competing for the top job on the August primary ballot -- has been campaigning for two years.

"I believe this state is ready to elect a progressive Democrat and to have the first woman governor of the State of Florida," Rich said.

On the Republican side, two unknown candidates ponied up the $7,800 qualifying fee. One, Yinka Adeshina, claims to have almost $182,000 in a campaign account.  The second, Elizabeth Cuevas-Neunder, shows $1,365 on hand, but loans of just over $10,000.

Qualifying candidates in other statewide races

  • Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi drew three challengers: Democrats George Sheldon and Perry Thurston and Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer.
  • Democrat William Rankin will challenge incumbent Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater.
  • Democrat Thaddeus Hamilton will be on the November ballot with incumbent Republican Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam. Write-in candidate Jeffrey Obos also qualified in the race.

Candidates for Northeast Florida legislative seats

  • State Sen. Aaron Bean drew no opposition in his Senate District 4 seat
  • Republican Sen. John Thrasher drew three opponents: Republican Derek Hankerson, Democrat Kathleen Trued and independent Greg Feldman.
  • Republican Rep. Janet Atkins will be challenged by Democrat Dave Smith and write-in candidate Wendy Martin in House District 11.
  • Republican Rep. Lake Ray competes for reelection with Democratic challenger Yevgeny Morozov in House District 12.
  • Democrat Rep. Reggie Fullwood drew no opposition in House District 13, but he missed the qualifying deadline and a special qualifying period will be set by the state Division of Elections.
  • Democrat Rep. Mia Jones drew no opposition in House District 14.
  • In House District 15 -- an open seat since Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce President Daniel Davis is not seeking reelection -- drew four candidates: Republicans Jay Fant and Paul Renner and write-in candidates Kerry Kelley and Calvin White.
  • Republican Rep. Charles McBurney drew a primary opponent: Chris Oliver in House District 16.  Brunell Martineau also qualified as a write-in candidate.
  • In House District 17, Republican Rep. Ronald Renuart will have an independent challenger in the November election: Rebecca Sharp.
  • Republican Rep. Travis Cummings drew a Libertarian opponent, Ken Willey, in House District 18.
  • Republican Rep. Charles Van Zant drew no opposition in House District 19.

The Florida Primary will be held August 26 and General Election on November 4.

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