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Journalists rejoice: Kim Daniels in HD 14 race

Former Jacksonville City Councilwoman Kim Daniels filed to run in HD 14 Tuesday, a gift to all NE Florida political journalists.

Daniels, picked as one of this site’s 5 People to Watch in Jacksonville Politics in 2016, was first linked to a potential run this summer.

Now? She’s in a three way race with Terry Fields, a former HD 14 legislator who has access to GOP money, and Leslie Jean-Bart, a first time candidate with legacy (the granddaughter of Mary Singleton) and the backing of the Corrine Brown political organization, as well as the legal community.

Daniels was an unfailingly interesting Council member. The details of her divorce came out during her re-election campaign, with questions emerging about her residency in the district (which won’t be an issue in a statewide race). Her rhetoric revolving around expansion of the Human Rights Ordinance to the LGBT community helped to mobilize LGBT activists and straight allies in support of her run off election opponent, Anna Brosche.

As well, Daniels was involved in a brawl at a polling place, which she spent an entire sermon one March afternoon discussing.

“When this lady addressed me, she grabbed me. It was part of the deal,” Daniels said. “She set me up.”

It got worse from there.

“This man ran me down in the street, blew his horn. He swung and hit me while I was sitting in the car,” Daniels said. She also said the problem was created, in part, by her making the mistake of “going up there by myself and being subject to dishonest, desperate people.”

Despite her contention she did nothing wrong, Daniels apologized, saying that “even if the appearance of evil is there, I apologize because this city is in the most important time ever.”

Beyond those issues, Daniels also had irregularities with the use of campaign funds to promote in Shofar magazine her book, The Demon Dictionary: Know Your Enemy, Learn His Strategies, DEFEAT HIM!

In the magazine’s Spring 2014 issue, Daniels — the founder of Spoken Word Ministries, Kimberly Daniels Ministries International and Rhema Way City Church — promotes her new book in an essay headlined “The Demon Dictionary Is Released!” In it, she thanks every “Commander of the Morning” who has helped the book “find favor” with Walmart’s distribution arm, asking that every “Commander” order “1-5 Demon Dictionaries to plant a seed in someone’s life,” as she needs help to “penetrate the marketplace for Jesus.”

Daniels encourages readers to “not be afraid of the dark world. ‘We ought to be afraid of smoking cigarettes, marijuana, lying and cheating, and treating others wrong. We ought to afraid [sic] of living like hellions, and not being equipped by God to deal with situations without being suicidal, without being checked into mental institutions.'” (It is not clear whom or what she is quoting here. This section, it’s worth noting, is accompanied by photos of her with Matt Shirk and Shad Khan.)

Speaking of Shad Khan, a PAC he gave big money to, Next Generation Leaders, paid for a mailer calling her a “true conservative.”

One candidate, Leslie Jean-Bart, has offered a reaction to Daniels entering the race.

“I welcome Kimberly Daniels to the House District 14 race. I look forward to debating on the issues and values most important to the constituents of District 14,” Jean-Bart said, before going deeper about her two opponents, which she depicts as retread pols coming off a loss.

“My Democratic opponents, Terry Fields and Kimberly Daniels, were rejected by the voters less than a year ago in the city council races. One opponent did not make it to the runoff and was previously defeated in the 2011 special election. The other opponent was the only incumbent not re-elected to the City Council. I believe the voters are looking for someone new to elected office who has proven that she can deliver on her promises and truly serve the best interest of the community,” Jean-Bart added.

HD 14 may not be the big money Democratic primary. But with a truly diverse and compelling field, it will be of statewide interest with Daniels in.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades, with bylines in national and local publications alike on subjects ranging from pop music to national and global politics. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014, and has held a column in Jacksonville, Florida's Folio Weekly for two decades. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." Gancarski is a frequent presence on Jacksonville television and radio, including fill-in slots on WJCT-FM's award-winning talk show "First Coast Connect." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

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