U.S. Rep. Mike Waltz doesn’t represent Jacksonville; the 6th Congressional District, which he calls home, only extends as far north as St. Johns County.
However, he does fundraise in Jacksonville — and for his Saturday shindig, Waltz will be accompanied by a special guest: Scott Stapp.
For the uninitiated, Stapp is lead singer for a rock ‘n’ roll group called Creed, a Nickelback-esque group responsible for hits like “My Sacrifice” and “With Arms Wide Open.”
Stapp, according to the Chicago Tribune, emerged from a “downward spiral” some years back. with its nadir being delusions that he was a CIA agent who was destined to assassinate President Barack Obama in 2014.
All of that is long since behind Stapp now, a friend of Waltz’s who has been deployed for political campaign/fundraising purposes before, but not (until Saturday) in Jacksonville.
The Waltz event has two honorary co-chairs of note: U.S. Rep. John Rutherford and Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry. This duo also served as honorary chairs for Waltz’s last Jacksonville fundraiser, as the 2018 primary campaign heated up in CD 6, a south-of-Jacksonville sinecure hugging the Atlantic coast in St. Johns, Flagler, and Volusia counties.
Those with historical memories will note the overlap of the trio’s political consultants, which previously included Curry’s current chief of staff Brian Hughes, and which still includes strategist Tim Baker.
Waltz won an expensive race in 2018 against Ambassador Nancy Soderberg, a Democrat with national name recognition and support. Though it’s doubtful Soderberg will be back for Round 2 given the decisive loss she took, Waltz is already fundraising aggressively for whatever challenge may manifest.
Though Q3 numbers are not in, through June 30 of this year Waltz had raised nearly $450,000, with $331,000 on hand.
A federal candidate, Waltz has until Oct. 15 to report fundraising through the end of September.