Ross Spano will be on the move this weekend.
The Republican state representative will hold three campaign kickoff events within the boundaries of Florida’s 15th Congressional District, which he declared for shortly after current CD 15 U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross announced he wouldn’t seek re-election in 2018. He had previously been a candidate to replace termed-out Attorney General Pam Bondi.
“I’m honored by the support our campaign has already generated, and I’m looking forward to officially kicking things off with my friends and neighbors,” Spano said. “The next Congressman from the 15th District will deal with very important issues, and I’m ready to share my ideas, solutions and commitment to Conservative values.”
The first event is slated for noon Friday at Minutemen Press in Brandon, 115 N. Kings Ave. That event will focus on “the negative impact of government regulations and taxes have on small businesses in Florida” and how Spano “can fight for small businesses while in Washington.”
The second meet and greet on the docket, also set for noon, will be held Saturday in Plant City’s McCall Park, 100 N Collins St, where the third term state lawmaker will be joined by his family for a “Family & Freedom Picnic” that promises plenty of “fellowship, food and fun.” He will also speak to attendees on his plans to “fight for conservative values” if voters send him to Washington.
The final kickoff will see Spano attend Sunday services at The Church at the Mall in Lakeland, 1010 E. Memorial Blvd. The church holds two Sunday services weekly. The first, a “progressive service,” begins at 9:15 am. The second, a “blended service,” starts at 10:45. Spano’s announcement didn’t specify which service he will attend.
Spano is one of a dozen candidates, including six Republicans, to qualify for the ballot in CD 15.
He faces former state Rep. Neil Combee, Sean Harper, Danny Kushmer, Curt Rogers and Ed Shoemaker in the Republican Primary. Also running are Democrats Kristen Carlson, Andrew Learned and Ray Pena as well as three write-in candidates.
Combee and Spano are the presumed frontrunners for seat, which covers Lake County, northwestern Polk County and Northeastern Hillsborough County. Spano, of Dover, has a base of support in Hillsborough, which is home to nearly half of CD 15’s Republican voters. Combee, of Auburndale, is the best known entrant in Polk, which holds another two-fifths of the district’s GOP voters.
Spano has made some inroads into Polk County during his brief tenure in the race, including endorsements from Winter Haven Republican Rep. Sam Killebrew and former Polk County Commissioner George Lindsey. The Combee campaign, however, says their chances will get a major boost due to Polk County’s favorite son, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, being on the Republican Primary ballot as a gubernatorial candidate.
Spano’s invites are below.