Grassroots, lawyer support propel Robin Bartleman to new fundraising record
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Robin Bartleman
The freshman Democrat's district would likely change numbers and boundaries in redistricting.

Rep. Robin Bartleman, a Weston Democrat, had her best fundraising performance so far this cycle last month, raising $18,065. That total was fueled mainly by individual donations and support from lawyers.

So far, the freshman Democratic lawmaker is facing a rematch with Republican George Navarini in House District 104, which could soon become House District 103, according to current redistricting maps under consideration.

Navarini raised $4,090 in December and spent $4,102, leaving him with $1,314 in cash on hand for the campaign. His donations show a grassroots campaign, with none of his 51 December donors giving more than $500.

In December, the most significant share of his money — nearly $3,400 — was paid to Fine Food Events Catering in Sunrise for a banquet.

Bartleman spent $1,838 in December, with the biggest bill coming in at $1,182, paid to Scuotto’s Pizza in Sunrise. That left her with $61,037 on hand.

According to both redistricting maps, Bartleman and Navarini would remain in the same district under consideration. One proposed map leaves HD 104 largely intact — while redesignating it as HD 103, another shows it could lose a chunk east of Interstate 75.

December’s campaign report also shows broad grassroots support for Bartleman. Out of 56 donors, 28 gave Bartleman a $100 or less donation.

This month presented the last opportunity for Bartleman to raise campaign cash for a while. State lawmakers are barred from accepting fundraising while the Legislature is in Session through March 11.

Lawyers and law firms represented the sector supporting Bartleman the most in December, accounting for a fifth of her donations. Those donations included $1,000 checks collected from Christopher Whitelock of Fort Lauderdale and David Frank of Boynton Beach.

AT&T Florida PAC represented the only PAC donation Bartleman received last month. Other $1,000 contributions came from Sean Phillippi, a Fort Lauderdale consultant; Sudha Agrawal, a Weston retiree; Heidi Schaeffer, a Boynton Beach physician; Graciela Udden, a Davie civil engineer; Naeem Udden, a Davie civil engineer; Jaffer Realty of Weston; and Synalovski Romanik Saye LLC, a Plantation architectural firm.

Bartleman, a special-education teacher and assistant principal, joined the House after 16 years serving on the Broward County School Board. In December, she received a $100 donation from current Broward School Board Member Debra Hixon.

Bartleman succeeded term-limited Democratic Rep. Richard Stark in 2020.

For the upcoming Session, Bartleman has filed bills that would expand Florida KidCare eligibility and extend “first responder” status and its benefits to 911 call-takers. She also filed legislation that would require extensive background checks for apartment employees to make residents safer.

Bartleman serves on the Public Integrity & Elections Committee and the State Affairs Committee. She also sits on three subcommittees: Local Administration & Veterans Affairs; Children, Families & Seniors; and PreK-12 Appropriations.

Right now, HD 104 covers parts of Broward County, including Weston and Southwest Ranches.

Candidates and political committees faced a Jan. 10 deadline to report all financial activity through Dec. 31.

Anne Geggis

Anne Geggis is a South Florida journalist who began her career in Vermont and has worked at the Sun-Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Gainesville Sun covering government issues, health and education. She was a member of the Sun-Sentinel team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Parkland high school shooting. You can reach her on Twitter @AnneBoca or by emailing [email protected].


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