Saul-Sena to officially announce County Commission candidacy

Linda Saul-Sena has been involved in Tampa politics for a long time - over twenty years.  But in all that time, she's essentially had just one job, that being a City Council member.

After months of contemplation, Saul-Sena pleasantly surprised local Democrats when she announced that would run for the Hillsborough County Commission seat being vacated by term-limited out incumbent Jim Norman, where she will take on current Commission Chair Ken Hagan.

I write that the news was a pleasant surprise because prior to Saul-Sena's Christmas Eve announcement, the Hillsborough Democratic Executive Committee had not offered up any challenger to oppose Hagan, who is running Countywide for the first time, after being elected twice representing North Hillsborough in District 2.

We'll run a longer piece on why Saul-Sena thinks she can be an effective Commissioner after her "official" news conference declaring her candidacy, which takes place this morning at Union Station in Tampa.

She becomes the 2nd current member of the Tampa City Council to run for County Commissioner in Hillsborough this year.  John Dingfelder announced awhile ago that he would run for the District 1 seat currently being occupied by Rose Ferlita.

Rose of course, has not declared if she will run for re-election for her seat. Dingfelder is betting that she won't, but instead will run to succeed Pam Iorio as Mayor next year.  It may be awhile before she declares, but in any event, Dingfelder has been working hard for months in getting his name out to much of the district that is outside of his residence in South Tampa.

(District 1 is a somewhat bizarre hybrid actually, which encompasses parts of northwest Hillsborough such as Town N Country, with parts of south Hillsborough.  Kathy Castor held it right before Ferlita's 2006 victory there).

The Norman seat is county wide, which means the Davis Islands resident will be putting some serious miles in as she attempts to get her message out to the entire county, which in case you forget, is really big.

What's that message? Will you know after the news conference.

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