As the Legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis continue to negotiate the future of Florida’s 5th Congressional District in redistricting, a former candidate announced another run for the seat.
Jacksonville Democrat LaShonda “LJ” Holloway filed paperwork with the Division of Elections this week to run in CD 5. The seat is currently held by Rep. Al Lawson, whose base is in the Tallahassee area.
Lawson seeks his fourth term in 2022. For Holloway, this will be her third run for the seat. She would be the second Democrat from Jacksonville in this field, joining activist Connell Crooms.
Holloway launched her first campaign for the seat in 2015, as then-incumbent Corrine Brown faced a career-ending indictment for fraudulent use of donor funds.
Lawson defeated both Brown and Holloway with under 50% of the vote, with Holloway’s votes largely coming from Duval, cannibalizing Brown’s share.
In 2018, Holloway did not run for the office, with former Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown falling to Lawson in the August Primary. However, she did run again in 2020, getting 18.3% of the vote. Lawson got 56% of the vote in that election.
The incumbent will have a resource advantage against any potential Primary challenge. Lawson closed his 2021 fundraising with a strong fourth quarter. Lawson raised $114,305 for the three months ending Dec. 31 and carried $333,675 in cash into 2022.
Lawson’s major challenge right now, however, is the current congressional redistricting wrangle. Gov. DeSantis’ general counsel prepared a redistricting map that eliminates CD 5, and indeed any minority-access district in North Florida.
DeSantis was rebuffed in his attempt to get an advisory opinion from the Supreme Court on whether CD 5 was actually constitutional or not, the latest seeming setback in the redistricting saga. The Senate has passed a map that largely preserves the status quo, including CD 5. The latest draft House map, which is still in committee, keeps the district essentially intact, but calls it CD 3.
DeSantis, who ultimately holds veto power, would destroy CD 5 altogether if he had his way. His map proposes two Jacksonville-area House districts, with the replacement for the current CD 5 being a configuration that puts Jacksonville’s Northside and Westside in with Nassau County and Duval County.
That district would perform Republican in all likelihood, having supported DeSantis and Donald Trump over Democratic opponents in recent elections.
If CD 5 does hold together, however, there may again be a General Election despite the district’s Democratic lean. Political newcomers Damascus Romocelly and Jon Chuba have both filed paperwork to run as Republicans.
February 11, 2022 at 11:25 am
I do not know but my motel bill will be 35 dollars
February 11, 2022 at 12:29 pm
Plus every thing is still judged like they own it
February 11, 2022 at 3:05 pm
Glad somebody in the Democrat party sees what a fraud AL I-CON-MAN Lawson is.
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