Amanda Makki becomes first Republican woman to qualify via petition for Florida Congressional Primary

Makki received 2,593 verified signatures.

Amanda Makki has become the first candidate to qualify for a spot on the primary ballot for Florida’s 13th Congressional District — making her the first Republican woman to do so in Florida.

Makki collected 2,593 verified signatures, according to the Florida Department of Elections, exceeding the 2,568 signatures required.

“Voters are sending a clear message that they want a community conservative in Congress. While my opponents focus on their exclusive high dollar fundraising events, I’ve held more than 27 widely attended ‘Meet and Greets’ that are open to everyone in the community,” Makki said in a statement. “I’ve always made it a point to attend every major event from Country in the Park in Pinellas Park, to King of the Beach in Madeira Beach, to the John’s Pass Seafood Festival, and Seminole Pow Wow, just to name a few.”

Makki, a GOP strategist and former senior Republican healthcare advisor for Congress, has earned endorsements from Maggie’s List and the Navy SEAL PAC, as well as amassing support from 12 Pinellas County mayors.

“I will not be outworked and I will always be available to the constituents of this district,” Makki continued in her statement. “I’m grateful to the voters who have rewarded me with this honor to be first on the ballot.”

Makki entered the race in mid-July, kicking off her campaign by diving head first into Trump territory and heightening her conservative rhetoric, as opposed to her previous approach as a more moderate conservative. This isn’t her first time in the ring. Two years ago, Makki lost the Republican Primary to Anna Paulina Luna, who she’ll face again in 2022.

Luna and Makki join Audrey Henson, Kevin Hayslett and Christine Quinn in the GOP Primary. Republican William Braddock dropped out of the race in June after recordings surfaced of him threatening Luna.

Three candidates are vying for the Democratic nomination, including state Reps. Ben Diamond and Michele Rayner–Goolsby and former Barack Obama administration national security adviser Eric Lynn.

Candidates hope to replace incumbent U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, who is not seeking re-election, as he is running instead for Governor.

The CD 13 race is expected to be one of the most competitive in the state. It will likely be among the most expensive as donors nationwide contribute. Democrats hope to keep the seat blue, while Republicans have an eye on flipping a key swing district as the party battles to reclaim a majority in the U.S. House.

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].


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