We're almost three months out from Florida's Aug. 14 primary, which so far features only a handful of exciting intra-party battles in the Bay area.
Among Hillsborough County Democrats, the only race that portends potential drama is the one for Supervisor of Elections. Current seat-holder Earl Lennard is stepping down after replacing the late Phyllis Busansky three years ago, and his number two in that office, Craig Latimer, declared early on that he would run for the illustrious seat.
But before Latimer can take on Plant City Republican Rich Glorioso in the fall, he has to get through a primary challenge from Tom Scott, the former County Commissioner and Tampa City Council member who ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Tampa in 2011.
Today Latimer announced endorsements from the West Central Florida Police Benevolent Association and the Fraternal Order of Police State Lodge and District 3 Lodges.
In his endorsement, James Preston, the Florida State Lodge Fraternal Order of Police never uses the words "Buddy" or "Johnson," but gets his message across nonetheless.
"We remember previous election controversies and a growing lack of public faith in Florida's voting procedures. But not in Hillsborough County lately. As the Chief of Staff under Supervisor Phyllis Busansky and Supervisor Earl Lennard, Craig Latimer has supervised and worked hard to restore the public trust and confidence in the voting process. With the knowledge and experience that Craig Latimer brings to this important office, we are confident that Hillsborough County will be the model that other Counties across our state look to."
The endorsements from the law enforcement agencies shouldn't be surprising, as Latimer spent over 35 years working with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office before moving over to the SOE's office in 2009.
Meanwhile Latimer's opponent, Tom Scott, is holding a fundraiser this Thursday night at Mangroves restaurant in South Tampa. Getting into the race late, he's got some work to do in the fundraising department, as Latimer reports raising over $54,000 as of the last filing period. Since getting into the race a little over a month ago, Scott has yet to submit any fundraising totals.