State Sen. John Thrasher, Florida State University’s soon-to-be president, submitted his letter of resignation from the Legislature on Monday. His departure is effective midnight Sunday.
The move set off a series of political events, beginning with formal filings by Republican state Reps. Ronald “Doc” Renuart and Travis Hutson to run for Thrasher’s Senate District 6 seat.
Renuart and Hutson each tendered resignation letters from the House, effective one day before a special general election in the Senate district. Renuart said he “definitely” would run for the Senate seat after Thrasher’s departure; Hutson also indicated he was considering entering the race.
Also showing interest is Republican Derek Hankerson, who lost to Thrasher in the August primary.
Senate District 6 includes Flagler, Putnam and St. Johns County, as well as some of Volusia County.
Gov. Rick Scott will not only have to call for a special election for Thrasher’s seat, but also ones to replace Renuart and Hutson. Renuart represents St. Johns County House District 17; Hutson represents District 24, covering Flagler County and sections of St. Johns and Volusia Counties.
The St. Augustine Republican resigned the Senate one day after the state university system Board of Governors confirmed Thrasher as the next FSU president.
“It has truly been my pleasure and honor to serve the constituents of District 6 and to serve with you, Mr. President, as well as many fine elected legislators over so many years,” said Thrasher in his resignation letter to Senate President Don Gaetz. “I am grateful for the many opportunities afforded me during my time in the Senate. Particularly, the appointment as chair of the Senate Committee on Rules for the last four years has been a unique privilege.”
Thrasher also asked Gaetz to allow the current District 6 staff to remain in office until the election of his replacement.