Rick Scott Finally Has a Lt. Gov. Short List, but One Candidate Already Dropped Out
Florida hasn't had a lieutenant governor for 256 days, but now Gov. Rick Scott has finally gotten around to forming a short list of candidates to replace the disgraced Jennifer Carroll. Naturally, one of the candidates in the running has already dropped out.
State Sen. Tom Lee, Hillsborough County Commissioner Sandy Murman, Sheriff Don Eslinger of Seminole County, and St. Johns County schools appointed superintendent Joseph Joyner were the original four names on the list, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
Though as of this morning Joyner has taken his name out of contention, citing commitment to his school district.
So who are the rest of these candidates? Spoiler alert: none of them are Tea Party-bait.
Tom Lee, 51, is by far the highest profile name on the list. He was a former Senate President and had previously run for CFO but lost to Alex Sink. He's been described as pro-business, but is generally considered a moderate Republican.
Murman, 63, served in the state house from 1996 until 2004 and has been a county commissioner since 2010. She was originally elected to the House as a Democrat, but had switched partied by 1997. She broke with Republicans in 2004 when her colleagues rejected federal money for women's health awareness. She was promptly called a "sheep" by the then House Speaker, and she was removed from her position as a committee chair.
Don Eslinger, 56, has been Seminole County's Sheriff since 1991, and yes, he was sheriff during the George Zimmerman investigation. Though, he is widely seen has a competent sheriff and his exact political views aren't known. Which might be a plus for the Scott campaign.
It definitely seems Scott, who has purposefully tried to come off more Moderate as he heads toward reelection, isn't going to make a big Tea Party splash with this pick.