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Amanda Makki is one of the GOP candidates backing term limits. Image via Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans

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Republican governance group endorses Amanda Makki in GOP challenge to Charlie Crist

The GOP group promotes conservative governance in elected office.

The Republican Main Street Partnership PAC is endorsing attorney and health care policy expert Amanda Makki for the GOP nomination in Florida’s 13th Congressional District.

The GOP nominee in that race will take on Democratic incumbent Charlie Crist.

The Republican Main Street Partnership is a conservative group founded in 1997 to strengthen the governing win of the Republican Party.

“Amanda is a product of the American dream,” said Sarah Chamberlain, President and CEO of Republican Main Street Partnership PAC. “Her career record of passionate service to our country and unrivaled work ethic is one that both Florida’s 13th District and Congress as a whole will stand to benefit from.”

Makki is a former Senior Health Advisor to Alaska Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski who she served for seven years, according to the Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian-Americans. Makki is Iranian.

Makki is part of Republican Main Street Partnership PAC’s second slate of “Suburban Candidate” endorsements. She recently completed group’s second “Suburban Candidate School” on January 15th in Washington, D.C. The program is tailored to teach candidates how to win their suburban districts with a core curriculum that addresses appealing to suburban women, working with unions, building a boots on the ground game, discussing the environment, and targeting ads via social media.

Makki formerly served as a partner with K&L Gates, a nationally-ranked public policy firm. She also currently served as Director of FDA Legislation and External Affairs for the Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk where she led the company’s external affairs and managed Food and Drug Administration-related legislation.

Prior to her private sector experience, she served as a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee during debate and passage of the Affordable Care Act. While serving in Murkowski’s office, she developed helped author health care legislation and amendments, and helped to set overall messaging and policy strategy.

Makki also worked for Republican Nebraska Congressman Jeff Fortenberry providing legal counsel on healthcare and education issues.

She is also a former George W. Bush appointee to the Army General Counsel at the Pentagon.

Makki was born in Tehran and immigrated with her family to the United States when she was an infant in 1979.

Makki will have a tough climb running as a Republican in a blue district, but her resume could make her a viable contender.

Five candidates are currently running for the Republican nomination including Makki, Matt BeckerAnna Paulina LunaSheila Griffin and George Buck. A Sixth candidate, Sharon Barry Newby, has announced she will run but is not currently listed as a candidate with the Federal Election Commission.

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a die-hard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics, including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and contentious issues surrounding transit. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also a devoted wife and mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder.

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