Meet Kelly Johnson, a Democrat running for House District 65

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"I am running to save our environment and to fight for hardworking families."

Hundreds of 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: Kelly Johnson, a Democratic candidate for House District 65.

In 25 words or less, why are you running for office?

I am running to save our environment and to fight for hardworking families.

Education background?

I have a bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science from Clearwater Christian College. I have a degree in Bible from Clearwater Christian College. I am also a certified personal trainer, performance enhancement specialist, and a corrective exercise specialist front the National Academy of Sports Medicine.

What was your first job?

I sold flowers on the corner for my very first job. It wasn’t hard work and was wonderful to meet so many people.

Significant other? Kids?

I am a divorced single mother of eight. Children are Jessica, 29, Heather, 27, Michael, 25, Louie, 20, Anthony, 18, Christopher, 14, Esther, 8 and Brooke, 8. I have a grandson, Brixton, and a granddaughter, Mackenzie.

Did you speak with anybody in your political party before deciding on running? Receive any encouragement?

I did not. I originally declared as an independent.

Who do you count on for advice?

My father and mother are still my greatest advisors.

Who is your political consultant? Campaign manager?

Logan Patterson is my local campaign manager. My digital campaign manager is Jackson McMillan. My daughter, Heather Spray, is my consultant and also designs all logos and ads.

Who was the first person to contribute to your campaign? Why did they donate?

My brother, Todd Johnson, was my first donor as well as my first recurring donor. He donated because he knows that I have the tenacity and drive to fight all the way to the White House. And my mom may have bribed him 🙂

What are 3 issues that you’re running on?

– I support proactive policies and funding statewide to protect our environment and that will help preserve our green spaces and improve water and air quality and will slow down climate change.

– I am and will continue to fight hard for small businesses and the working class. We need to adopt a trickle down tax system that will require high profit individuals and businesses to pay out the most in revenue and keep protections in place so that politics will not continue to allow large corporations to get incentives like they did in payouts from CARES act money.

– I will not stop until I know that all Floridians have healthcare and/or access to the medical care they need.

What is a “disruptive” issue you are interested in?

Arming teachers. We must continue to block this push to arm teachers. This is not an appropriate answer to school violence. We need to push hard to get guns off campuses not pass laws to put more in!

What does your legislative district need from Tallahassee?

A representative that cares about their needs. My district needs a loud voice, someone who will be willing to go across the aisle to make decisions not based on party, but based on intelligent compromise.

Who was the best governor in Florida’s modern history?

Charlie Crist.

If you could amend the Florida Constitution, what would you change?

Voting rights restored to felons regardless of financial restitution. This was signed into law in 2019 by an overwhelming majority but got kicked back by the Supreme Court in 2020.

Are yard signs an important part of campaigning in your district?

Somewhat. Name recognition is important however I feel that the roads are flooded with signs right now particularly the larger ones and they tend to ruin our scenery. I’m sure tourists don’t appreciate them either. I feel we should have a limit to how many we can put up per candidate and size limits.

What’s the first thing you read each morning?

This varies. It can be news, Facebook, or my Bible. In no particular order.

Where do you get your political news?

Well from Florida Politics of course 🙂

Social media presence? Twitter handle?

Instagram

Facebook

Twitter

– Tik Tok: @politiktok

In 280 characters, what’s a Tweet that best describes your campaign message?

District 65 needs smart, well-rounded and experienced leadership to propel it into the future. In a post-COVID-19 economy, Kelly Johnson will fight for legislation that prioritizes environment, health care, school safety, small businesses, and the working class.

Hobbies?

Writing, cycling, boxing, and weight lifting.

Favorite sport and sports team?

Football: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the Florida State Capitol. After a go with the U.S. Army, the Orlando-native attended the University of Central Florida and earned a degree in American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. He'd love to hear from you. You can reach Jason by email ([email protected]) or on Twitter at @byJasonDelgado.



#FlaPol

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, Jason Delgado, Renzo Downey, Daniel Figueroa, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Kelly Hayes, Joe Henderson, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Scott Powers, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Andrew Wilson, Mike Wright, and Tristan Wood.

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




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