Conservative Lake County Sheriff backs Scott Franklin over Ross Spano in CD 15 GOP primary
Sheriff Peyton Grinnell

It's Franklin's second endorsement from a Sheriff.

Lake County Sheriff Peyton Grinnell is endorsing Scott Franklin in his run against incumbent Ross Spano in the Republican primary for Florida’s 15th Congressional District. 

Despite Spano’s incumbent status, he has been fighting an uphill battle against Franklin, who has been challenging him in campaign fundraising and endorsements. 

Spano faces investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice, the Florida Bar and the Federal Elections Commission for fumbling his campaign finances in 2018. The incumbent accepted $180,000 in loans from two friends, money he then put into his campaign in obvious violation of campaign contribution limits. Since then he has been a top target for Democrats and now, his own party.

Grinnell praised Franklin’s alignment with President Donald Trump, which Franklin has made a key platform. 

“Scott Franklin has my full support,” Grinnell said in a news release. “I know he has the experience, the dedication and commitment to serve our community in Congress. He’ll help advance President Trump’s agenda, secure our borders and protect our rights. And we can trust him to get the job done.”

Grinnell’s endorsement is Franklin’s second from a Sheriff within the congressional district. Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd endorsed Franklin earlier this month.

Franklin is a former Naval aviator and currently serves as a Lakeland City Commissioner. Grinnell was elected Lake County Sheriff in 2016 and is also a veteran who served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1986 to 1991. 

Florida’s 15th Congressional District covers parts of Hillsborough, Lake and Polk counties, including the cities of Brandon, Plant City, Lakeland, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Dover, Polk City, Groveland and Clermont.

Democrats Alan Cohn, Adam Hattersley and Jesse Philippe are also running.

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected].


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn