Speaker-Designate Paul Renner announced he is backing Republican Rep. Alex Andrade as Andrade pursues a third term representing House District 2.
The district, under new maps approved by the Legislature, covers portions of Escambia and Santa Rosa counties and is centered on the coastal portion of Pensacola.
“Alex Andrade is the leader Northwest Florida needs,” Renner said in a Thursday statement announcing his support for Andrade’s bid.
“He is a strong conservative that honors the pro-military community he represents, he is a fierce advocate for life, and he will continue to be a champion for small businesses. I look forward to working with Rep. Andrade and to welcoming him back to Tallahassee to continue the good work he is doing for Florida’s Panhandle.”
Renner is also running for re-election in the Palm Coast-based District 19, which runs along the eastern coast of North Florida. He’s already earned the blessing of Gov. Ron DeSantis in his re-election effort.
Now, the man who is preparing to lead House Republicans following the November election is endorsing Andrade in a race featuring four other candidates, two of whom are Republicans.
“Northwest Florida has shown tremendous grit through natural and man-made disasters during my time in office. I have been honored to serve my constituents in responding to the terrorist attack at NAS Pensacola, threats to our freedoms during COVID-19, Hurricane Sally, and the collapse of the Pensacola Bay Bridge; and I’m grateful for leaders like Speaker-designate Renner, who has always been there for us when I’ve called on him,” Andrade said.
“I will always fight to keep Florida free and honor the sacrifice of our brave men and women of the armed forces, first responders, and their families. I am grateful to Speaker-designate Renner for his support and look forward to working with him and Gov. DeSantis to continue fighting for our conservative values in Tallahassee.”
Jordan Karr and Jon Gregory Litton are also listed as Republican candidates in HD 2, according to the Division of Elections. Andy Romagnano and Carollyn Rabeca Taylor are running as Democrats.
HD 2 is a safe seat for Republicans. The district went for DeSantis by nearly 17 percentage points in 2018. In 2020, it went for former President Donald Trump by nearly 14 percentage points.