Florida police union endorses Wengay Newton in HD 62

Newton served in the House from 2016 through 2020.

The Florida Fraternal Order of Police is endorsing former Rep. Wengay Newton as he runs for House District 62.

The state order represents more than 24,000 law enforcement officers.

“As we approach the 2022 elections we are aware that strong leaders are needed to lead Florida to a prosperous and safe future. We need leaders that are dedicated to serving their constituents and have the backs of the law enforcement officers protecting the citizens in their community,” the Florida FOP said in a statement.

Newton has also been endorsed by the St. Petersburg and Tampa Firefighters Unions and the Suncoast Association of Firefighters and Paramedics.

“I am honored to have the support and endorsement of the 24,000 men and women of the Fraternal Order of Police — Florida State Lodge. Frontline, essential workers keep our families safe,” Newton said in a statement.

Newton served in the Florida House from 2016 through 2020. He’ll appear on the August Democratic Primary ballot after clearing some hurdles in the qualification process.

He’s running against incumbent Democratic Rep. Michele Rayner, who succeeded Newton in the 2020 election. Her victory was noteworthy, as the first openly gay woman of color elected to the Legislature. A third Democratic candidate, Jesse Philippe, also is in the race.

The winner of the Democratic Primary will face Republican Jeremy Brown in the November General Election. However, the Republican candidate may struggle to win in the deep-blue district, which saw 72% support for President Joe Biden in the 2020 election, and only 27% for Donald Trump.

Newton served eight years on the St. Petersburg City Council. He did not seek re-election to the House in 2020 in order to run for Pinellas County Commission, a race he lost in the August Primary to former Pinellas County School Board member Rene Flowers. In 2021, Newton unsuccessfully sought the St. Petersburg mayoral position, which was ultimately won by Ken Welch.

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].


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn