Nearly 250 candidates are vying for state House and state Senate seats in 2020. Try as we will, Florida Politics can’t interview all of them.
Just like in 2016 and 2018, we’re again asking every candidate to complete a questionnaire we believe offers an interesting, albeit, thumbnail sketch of who they are and why they are running. If you are a candidate and would like to complete the questionnaire, email [email protected]
Today’s feature: Stevan Novakovic, a Republican candidate for House District 31.
In 25 words or less, why are you running for office?
Florida needs young conservatives with skin in the game to make innovative policy decisions that pave the way for the state’s rapid change and growth.
BSBA – University of South Carolina, triple-major in International Business, Global Supply Chain and Operations Management, and Finance, minor in Russian.
MPP – Georgetown University, McCourt School.
MA – Columbia University in the City of New York, Religion.
What was your first job?
Pulling weeds and hauling garbage at my aunt and uncle’s cactus nursery in Mt. Plymouth, Florida.
Significant other? Kids?
Did you speak with anybody in your political party before deciding on running? Receive any encouragement?
Yes, I spoke with multiple current and former politicians and insiders which were encouraging but also constructive in offering measured, tempered advice regarding the battle of politics.
Who do you count on for advice?
Myself, my friends, my family, and those experienced experts in respective fields.
Who is your political consultant? Campaign manager?
My campaign manager is Coleman Davis (BA History and BA Political Science, MA History, Auburn University), and my chief campaign adviser is Matthew Silbernagel, Esq.
Who was the first person to contribute to your campaign? Why did they donate?
The first person to contribute to my campaign was Matthew Silbernagel, who donated due to his similar stance and opinions on most major policy issues, as well as belief in my abilities as a potential state legislator.
Who, if anyone, inspires you in state government?
Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Dennis Baxley.
Why do people mistrust elected officials and what are you going to do about it?
I intend to legislate in a manner that fights for the policies that impact my district and animate the people of HD 31. By actually listening to the voters and working towards their goals, I believe my actions will speak louder than words.
What are 3 issues that you’re running on?
– Preserve, protect and expand Floridian gun rights, specifically focusing on lowering the age requirements for purchasing guns and ammunition back to 18 and rolling back red-flag laws.
– Preserve, protect and rejuvenate Florida’s natural resources, especially by using innovative, data driven solutions to find the sweet-spot of maximum utility at the apex of agriculture and conservation.
– Preserve and protect history by refusing to support any bill that seeks to erase or rewrite our American, Floridian, or local heritage.
What is a “disruptive” issue you are interested in?
Enabling young people to enter the agricultural profession by working to increase access to land and credit, encouraging innovative farming practices such as micro-farms, no-down payment agricultural loans, and incentivizing local vertical integration in food processing.
What does your legislative district need from Tallahassee?
– Funding for lake and river conservation as well as infrastructure development.
– Legislatively incentivizing the expansion of no-down payment agricultural loans to enable more young people to start farms.
Who was the best governor in Florida’s modern history?
Gov. Ron DeSantis.
If you could amend the Florida Constitution, what would you change?
Add Constitutional Carry.
Are yard signs an important part of campaigning in your district?
Yard signs in general have minimal impacts on campaign outcomes, but in a situation where my name recognition is fairly low, yard signs could be helpful for me.
What’s the first thing you read each morning?
I check the futures charts for morning and overnight trading of the major commodities, equities, and foreign exchange markets followed by scanning local news.
Where do you get your political news?
Twitter, Reuters, Forbes and The Washington Times.
Social media presence? Twitter handle?
– Facebook @StandwithStevan
– Twitter: @StandwithStevan
In 280 characters, what’s a Tweet that best describes your campaign message?
“Stand with Stevan to expand gun rights, conserve natural resources, protect our history, enable homeschooling, fight for Life, help young people farm, and make Florida self-reliant!”
Culinary (especially smoking meat), fishing, snorkeling, boating, reading and traveling.