Rick Kriseman won't run for re-election this fall

St. Petersburg House Democrat Rick Kriseman will not run for a fourth term this fall, CL has learned.

The 49-year old attorney has represented Florida’s House District 53 in Tallahassee since 2006, but questions have circulated for months about whether he would run for a fourth two-year term as his name frequently comes up as a possible challenger to Bill Foster when St. Pete’s mayor runs for re-election in November of 2013.

Not that Kriseman has decided to commit to that. He is expected to announce later today that he will not be a candidate for the House in 2012, with the proverbial line about about wanting to spend more time with his family.

But if he does have designs on running for mayor, it wouldn’t make sense to raise funds in what could be a competitive race this year, and then turn around after next year’s session to call it quits and run for mayor.

With redistricting, Kriseman would be running in a slightly different district this fall, with a bit more of a red hue to it. He already had a Republican challenger in the district 69 race, South Pasadena Mayor Kathleen Peters, who raised over $10,000 in the first fiscal quarter as a declared candidate. Democrats will want to find a viable candidate soon to try to retain the seat.

Kriseman began his career in electoral politics when he was appointed to the St. Petersburg City Council in 2000. He won elections there in 2001 and 2003 before stepping down in 2006 to run for the state House.

One of the most progressive Democrats in Tallahassee and the Bay area, the Boca Ciega High graduate was named by CL last fall as one of the Bay area’s best politicians in our annual Best of the Bay issue.

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