Kathleen Passidomo can add members of the Senate’s future leadership to her list of supporters.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Galvano, Sen. Wilton Simpson, and House Majority Whip Jim Boyd are scheduled to host a fundraiser for Passidomo’s Senate District 28 bid on June 21 in Bradenton. Both Galvano, a Bradenton Republican, and Simpson, a Trilby Republican, are believed to be in line for the Senate presidency if Republicans keep the majority.
Passidomo faces Rep. Matt Hudson, a Naples Republican, in the race to replace Sen. Garrett Richter in the Florida Senate. Richter, also a Naples Republican, can’t run for re-election because of term limits.
The race could be shaping up to be hotly contested. It marks the first time in several years the seat has been competitive. Richter ran unopposed in both of his elections.
The recent redistricting decision has shifted the makeup of the district. The new District 28 includes all of Collier and Hendry counties and a portion of Lee County.
Both candidates are well-known in the community. Hudson has represented parts of eastern Collier County since 2007. His district includes eastern Collier County and all of Hendry County. Passidomo has served coastal Collier County since 2010. She’s been an attorney in Naples for several decades.
Passidomo has already received the support of Richter, who this spring announced he was endorsing her. Earlier this week, Richter and former Rep. Dudley Goodlette, a Naples Republican, hosted a fundraiser for Passidomo in Tallahassee.
The Senate District 28 race also might be shaping up to be an expensive one. Since announcing he was planning to run for the seat, Hudson has raised $418,724. State records showed Hudson had more than $350,000 cash on hand at the end of the March fundraising period.
Passidomo has raised $260,300 since jumping in the race in November 2014. State records showed she had more than $165,000 cash on hand at the end of the March fundraising period.
No Democrat has filed to run in Senate District 28.