Republican Danny Burgess and Democrat Kathy Lewis quickly qualified Wednesday to run for a Senate seat that became open when Sen. Tom Lee, a Thonotosassa Republican, decided to leave office two years before his term expires.
While the election in Senate District 20 will be held with other races in November, it is technically a special election.
As a result, a special qualifying period opened at 8 a.m. Wednesday and will end at noon Thursday.
Lee announced in late May that he would step down instead of staying in the Senate until 2022, when his term would have expired.
Republican leaders immediately backed Burgess, a former House member who most recently served as executive director of the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Lewis unsuccessfully ran against Lee for the Senate seat in 2018.
District 20 is made up of parts of Hillsborough, Pasco and Polk counties.
Republished with permission of the News Service of Florida.