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2020

Darryl Rouson picks up cache of Hillsborough endorsers

Three people are challenging Rouson for his Senate seat.

Sen. Darryl Rouson picked up endorsements from almost all of Tampa City Council and several constitutional officers in Hillsborough County, his campaign announced Thursday.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and seven City Council members including Luis Viera, Joe Citro, Charlie Miranda, John Dingfelder, Bill Carlson, Orlando Gudes and Guido Maniscalco endorsed him for reelection as well as State Attorney Andrew Warren, Public Defender Julianne Holt and Property Appraiser Bob Henriquez.

All are Democrats.

“Darryl Rouson has been our warrior for Tampa and Hillsborough County in Tallahassee fighting for our local needs and issues,” Carlson said.

Rouson’s Senate District 19 includes parts of Hillsborough and Pinellas counties and is one of the most diverse districts in the state. It leans heavily democratic.

Rouson does not face a primary challenger, but two Republicans are vying for the chance to take him on in November including Kriztofer Cole and Yolanda Valdez. No party affiliation candidate Christina Paylan is also running.

None of his challengers have raised significant funds. Valdez hasn’t raised a dime while Cole has raised less than $100 and Paylan just $200, though she has also loaned her campaign $35,000.

Rouson, meanwhile, has raised more than $273,000 for his reelection bid.

“I am humbled and honored to receive the endorsement of all of these great elected community leaders that support our democratic values. I will strive to fight for them and all us until we achieve their goals. I will continue to be your champion in the Florida Senate,” Rouson said.

Rouson has represented the district since 2016. Before that he served eight years in the Florida House in a district spanning parts of Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas and Sarasota counties.

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 Janelle@floridapolitics.com.

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