Ben Diamond clears $250K in first 4 weeks of CD 13 bid

Diamond, Ben - 7
Diamond's contributors include a 94-year old retiree who sent a note.

Rep. Ben Diamond has raised more than $250,000 for his congressional bid in just four weeks, his campaign announced Thursday.

Diamond, a St. Petersburg Democrat, is running in Florida’s 13th Congressional District to succeed U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, who is running for Governor.

Diamond’s financial report has not yet been filed with the federal Division of Elections, but his campaign said the majority of the four-week earnings came from Pinellas County residents, where the district is located.

Donors include, the campaign said, a 94-year old Largo retiree who contributed $25 to the campaign. The donor, who lives on a fixed income, wrote Diamond explaining his contribution.

“One year ago, I visited with (you) about the massive weeds that have caused a pollution ‘block’ in our County Lakes. You sat up and listened to what I had to say,” the man, who the Diamond campaign did not name, said. “I want you to know I appreciated your concern. You have my vote, and I will try to influence others. I would be willing to speak at any rally if it would help.”

Diamond, a lawyer who previously served as general counsel to former Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, is running on common-sense solutions to challenges he has tackled in the Florida Legislature, including climate change and the environment, criminal justice reforms to ensure everyone is treated equally regardless of race or ethnicity, and health care that is accessible and affordable.

Diamond was first elected to the Florida House in 2016 and has been reelected twice, in 2018 and 2020. The Democratic caucus in the House voted to install him as Minority Leader in 2022, but Diamond will leave that leadership post behind to run for Congress.

Diamond so far faces Eric Lynn, a former staffer in the Barack Obama administration, in the Democratic Primary for CD 13. Republican Anna Paulina Luna, who lost to Crist in 2020, is also running.

Lynn, as of the end of March, had posted just $332 in total campaign receipts, money carried over from a previous campaign. His current campaign announced raising $100,000 in its first five days. Luna, meanwhile, shows a negative balance, also a carried over balance.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

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 [email protected]

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