Alex Sink is running for Congress.
Florida’s former chief financial officer and Democratic gubernatorial nominee on Tuesday confirmed exclusively to the Tampa Bay Times that she is jumping into the race to succeed late Republican U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young in a district covering much of Pinellas County.
Sink, 65, has begun looking for a Pinellas home and said she will move “imminently” into the district from her east Hillsborough home 45 minutes away.
“Washington’s broken. And I, like everybody else I know, is angry and mad about the logjam, about shutting down the government, about not understanding the impact it was going to have on small businesses and people. The people up there just don’t seem to be able to work together,” said Sink, who had considered running for governor again but ruled that out in late September.
“I’m somebody who’s solved problems, has a long history of working with Republicans and Democrats to get things done,” said Sink, who used to run Bank of America’s Florida operations and was CFO from 2007-2011. “I believe I can be an effective advocate for the people of Pinellas County and get to Washington and make a difference.”
The special election campaign for one of the country’s most competitive seats won’t last long.
Hope this doesn't prove embarassing. A couple days ago a reader emailed me about the race to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young, R-Indian Shores:
How about Alex Sink running for Young's seat? She would be a strong Democratic candidate. She has the name recognition and she would also be another voice of reason for the House...
That thought hadn't occurred to me. I forwarded the email to Sink: "I've heard a lot crazier ideas...Let me know if you'd like Realtor recommendations," I wrote, curious if her interest might be piqued.
She did not respond to my (mostly) joking note. But now Peter Schorsch reports that according to unnamed sources Sink is seriously considering a run for that Pinellas seat.
If it happens - and we've heard no solid confirmation yet, just excitement from Sink fans - she would be have to be considered the immediate general election frontrunner, even if she did only beat Rick Scott in the district with 51.1 percent of the vote. Legally, Sink would not actually have to live in the district, though it certainly would be a bit unseemingly to live
Legally, she would not have to live in the district, but it would be a bit unseemly to continue living in rural Thonotosassa, nearly 40 miles away from the district.
“This district is a strong pickup opportunity for Democrats – and that’s why in the past 24 hours alone two top Republicans have already taken a pass at running," said DCCC spokesman David Bergstein. "A candidate – like Alex Sink – who has a strong record of solving problems would be extremely competitive in this district.”
Will she or won’t she run?
Don’t ask Alex Sink. She sounds utterly unsure about whether she’ll run for governor. But the 2010 Democratic candidate and prior state CFO at least sounds sincere about it.
Sink acknowledges she's “tempted.”
“I go back and forth,” she said, adding she’ll decide by Oct. 25, when the state Democratic Party kicks off its state convention. “I really don’t know.”
Little-known and struggling financially, Nan Rich might get some help from the unlikeliest of places during the Democratic primary race for governor: supporters of Republican Gov. Rick Scott.
Scott’s top political advisor and pollster Tony Fabrizio hinted at the scheme late Tuesday night in a rare appearance at the Women’s Republican Club of Miami.
Team Scott’s ultimate goal: vex Charlie Crist, a well-known former governor and Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat who might run against Rich to unseat Scott.
“I don’t know if Charlie Crist wins the primary against Nan Rich. And that’s not saying that Nan Rich wouldn’t have help,” Fabrizio said with a smile. “You never know. There could be interested citizens that like to help Nan Rich… Nan Rich is the true Democrat.”
Coincidentally, the legal-lobbying firm of Becker & Poliakoff is fundraising for both Rich and Scott.
In an op-ed in today's Tampa Bay Times, former Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink details the reasons why she believes Citizens Property Insurance should reject what she calls a "sweetheart deal" with take-out company Heritage Property and Casualty.
And as Adam Smith reports today, Sink is not ruling out another run for governor -- but she's not quite ruling it in yet either.
In the editorial, she says "the recent Citizens Property Insurance deal with start-up insurance company Heritage Property and Casualty of St. Petersburg must be stopped immediately and thoroughly reviewed by our elected officials who appoint the Citizens board members. These officials include Gov. Rick Scott, Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, House Speaker Will Weatherford and Senate President Don Gaetz." More here.
U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said he is not planning to run against Gov. Rick Scott in the 2014 governor's race but stopped short of completely ruling it out.
"I'm not planning to run for governor," he said Wednesday in Tallahassee. "I have no intention of running for governor. I've got plenty to do as serving as the senator of this state, and that's why I'm here today, in my role as senator."
Will you say that you won't run for governor? a reporter asked. "I said what I said," Nelson replied
The lobbying team who represented Allied Veterans, and its software company International Internet Technologies, terminated its relationship yesterday in light of the federal investigation into racketeering when they determined that the company has misrepresented itself to them, said its former spokeswoman Sarah Bascom.
The lobbying team:
International Internet Technologies and its owners and affiliates have spent $340,000 in campaign contributions in the last election cycle and $195,000 in the 2010 cycle. Allied Veterans also gave $25,000 to Gov. Rick Scott for his inauguration and the money went to the Wounded Warriors program.
Former CFO Alex Sink is weighing in on the state’s new proposal to rebrand itself for business, calling it “terrible” and joining a growing list of critics who are slamming the orange-tie imagery as sexist.
Here’s what Sink posted on Facebook this afternoon:
Did you see this? http://bit.ly/YB9rnx What
a terrible way to brand our state. We are diverse. We are modern. And we won't
stand for our state to be portrayed as having a stuffy, outdated climate for
business. Share this photo if you agree and let your friends and family know
that we are the state of innovators and entrepreneurs. Ditch the tie and join
Sink, who fell 60,000 votes short of becoming the state’s first female governor in 2010, was defeated by Gov. Rick Scott.
Last week Scott hailed the orange tie image as “a brand that will solidify our reputation to the nation and the world.”
Enterprise Florida is standing by the brand, even as it deals with a barrage of controversy in recent days, starting with its decision to outsource a $200,000 Florida branding contract to a Tennessee-based company. When the new business brand was unveiled, several businesswomen slammed it as sexist, because it was anchored on the image of a necktie. On Tuesday, a watchdog group blasted EFI for engaging in “pay-to-play” cronyism and “corporate welfare” through its multimillion-dollar incentives program. Lawmakers are also looking to crack down on incentives, and EFI has been defending them as proven investments in economic development.
Sink is one of a handful of potential 2014 challengers to Scott, who is facing dangerously low poll numbers.
Rick Scott’s poll numbers look dismal. His finances don’t.
"One number should worry you: $70 million. That’s how much Rick Scott spent in 2010," Annette Taddeo-Goldstein, Miami-Dade’s new Democratic chairwoman, told Democrats this weekend.
To be clear, she was referring to Scott’s personal money. And it was actually closer to $75.1 million.
Include the Republican Party, and Scott probably spent just under $100 million. He was worth at least $218 million at the time, but reports he lost net worth after becoming governor. His wife has millions more.
Scott is prepared to spend as much or more in 2014.
The money race is on. And Democrats are losing it. But they know it.