Veteran broadcast journalist Alan Cohn will once again run for Congress, this time in an open seat.
Cohn won the Democratic nomination for the pre-redistricting CD 15 in 2020, but ultimately lost to Republican Scott Franklin. When he ran, Cohn was challenging then-U.S. Rep. Ross Spano, but Franklin beat Spano in a Primary.
But this year, Franklin has qualified to run in Florida’s newly reconfigured 18th Congressional District.
The district covers east Hillsborough, south Pasco and west Polk counties. Cohn has run before in much of that territory, both in 2020 and under a different configuration of the district in 2014, when he challenged then-U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross, a Lakeland Republican.
In one sense, the race could be easier this year for Cohn because it’s an open seat. But it remains a Republican-leaning one in a year when many suspect Republicans will perform well in the Midterms.
He’s also following other Democrats into the race. Video producer Eddie Geller jumped into the race last August and has since raised $283,814 for a run. Political consultant Gavin Brown has also qualified to run for the seat, as well as Army veteran Cesar Ramirez. Other Democrats who have filed but not yet qualified include Lily Ramcharran and Bill VanHorn.
The open seat has also attracted interest from heavy hitters on the Republican side including former Secretary of State Laurel Lee, state Sen. Kelli Stargel, state Rep. Jackie Toledo and veterans Mac McGovern and Demetries Grimes. For months, Ross also was campaigning to run again. But he ultimately left the race.
Under the new lines, Republican Donald Trump won the support of 50.86% of voters in 2020, compared to 47.74% who voted for Democrat Joe Biden.