Florida House candidate reporting for duty at MacDill Air Force Base

Andrew Learned
Learned is proud to be serving, but looks forward to getting back on the trail.

Andrew Learned reported for duty this week at MacDill Air Force Base for his annual service with the U.S. Navy.

Learned is a Lieutenant Commander in the Navy Reserve and currently serves in Special Operations Command Central.

Learned is participating in an annual two-week training required for all officers in the reserves.

“It’s an honor to put on the uniform and serve,” Learned said.

The service means Learned will be off the campaign trail for two weeks, but he said he’s looking forward to getting back on the trail after serving his country.

Learned has served a decade in the Navy both as active duty and as a reservist. He’s deployed three times to the Middle East and is a Surface Warfare Officer and specialized as his ship’s boarding officer during counter-piracy missions to Somalia.

Learned is running for Florida House District 59 to replace Rep. Adam Hattersley who is not seeking reelection and instead running for Congress.

Learned is the sole Democrat in the race after fellow Democrat Mark Oliver left the race to instead run for House District 70, which Rep. Wengay Newton is vacating.

Democrats are fighting to keep the HD 59 seat blue after Hattersley flipped it two years ago. Meanwhile, Republicans are hoping the open race gives them an opening to reclaim the seat formerly held by Republican U.S. Rep. Ross Spano.

HD 59 represents parts of east Hillsborough County including the Brandon area.

Two Republicans are running — Danny Kushmer and Michael Owen. Learned has raised nearly $70,000 for the race, but he’s not the top fundraiser. Owen has raised more than $82,000 plus another more than $30,000 of his own money. Kushmer has raised more than $41,000.

While Learned will be largely unable to campaign while serving in the Navy, his campaign will still be able to raise funds. With Oliver out of the race, Learned no longer has to worry about surviving a primary and can focus his spending on gearing up for the general election in November.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected]


2 comments

  • Danny boy

    February 23, 2020 at 4:28 am

    Danny is more of a man than this sorry excuse of a candidate. The only reason he joined the navy was so he could run for office.

  • Jeff

    February 25, 2020 at 7:23 am

    This guy joined the navy so he could eat seaman. He’s no more that a glorified cock warmer.

Comments are closed.


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