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Reggie Brown to decide in ‘early January’ whether to challenge Audrey Gibson

Will he or won’t he?

That’s the question regarding termed-out Jacksonville City Councilman Reggie Brown, who is still mulling a primary challenge against state Sen. Audrey Gibson.

Florida Politics reported on this earlier this month. Brown confirmed then that he was exploring a run to a Florida Times-Union reporter, then to this outlet.

“All options are being considered,” Brown texted. “I’m reviewing the possibilities and will make a decision early January.”

Before Christmas, rumors flew that Brown was meeting with Mayor Lenny Curry to discuss resigning for a state Senate run. However, both Brown and those in Curry’s orbit said such a meeting wasn’t happening.

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The fact that the rumor is there at all, however, is a strong indication that Brown is being taken seriously as potential competition.

Gibson, who is leader-designate of the Senate Democrats, is an unlikely candidate to be primaried.

November was the fourth straight month she brought in over $10,000. Gibson has raised $118,268, with $102,095.82 on hand.

Among Gibson’s donors: Dosal Tobacco Company, Florida Bankers Association PAC, Florida Home Builders, Walmart and Walgreens. These are the types of corporate donors who don’t give to all Democrats, and they are a source of funds Brown likely wouldn’t be able to access.

Brown has won elections without massive fundraising before; his 2015 re-election bid saw him win with just $42,000.

He also is visible in the local community.

Reggie Brown challenging Audrey Gibson would immediately become the most interesting primary race on the ballot in Northeast Florida.

And it just may happen.

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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