State Attorney Brian Haas jabs Andrew Warren in Kelli Stargel endorsement

Brian Haas state attorney
He contrasts Warren with Stargel, calling her a "conservative warrior."

State Attorney Brian Haas is endorsing state Sen. Kelli Stargel in her run for Florida’s 15th Congressional District. But his endorsement didn’t just tout Stargel’s devotion to conservatism — he took the chance to make a jab at former Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren, who was recently suspended from his post by Gov. Ron DeSantis in a controversial decision.

Haas serves the 10th Judicial Circuit, which includes Polk, Highlands, and Hardee counties. In his endorsement statement, he echoed DeSantis’ rhetoric on Warren, criticizing him as a progressive prosecutor with “radical ideologies” for refusing to enforce bans on abortion and gender-affirming surgery.

“While State Attorneys across the country and right next door in Hillsborough County are rejecting the rule of law in favor of radical ideology, now more than ever we need a strong conservative like Kelli Stargel to fight for the safety and security of our families and our communities,” Haas said in a statement.

He contrasts Warren with Stargel, calling her a tough-on-crime “conservative warrior.”

“I am proud to endorse Kelli Stargel for Congress because she is a proven conservative warrior who will stand up for the rule of law, back the blue and continue to fight for freedom,” he added.

Haas’ endorsement adds to Stargel’s support from law enforcement — she has also been endorsed by Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

Stargel’s opponents in the GOP Primary include state Rep. Jackie Toledo of Tampa, former Secretary of State Laurel Lee, and U.S. Navy veterans Kevin McGovern and Demetries Grimes. At the start of July, Lee led the pack in campaign resources with $487,000 cash on hand, while Stargel brought up the rear with $254,000 in her campaign coffers.

The Democratic Primary is crowded as well, featuring five candidates: Gavin BrownAlan CohnEddie GellerCesar Ramirez and William VanHorn.

The district slightly favors Republicans, as former President Donald Trump won the district 50.9% to 47.7% over President Joe Biden in the 2020 election.

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]


4 comments

  • Ocean Joe

    August 6, 2022 at 2:35 pm

    Maybe this will make up for what her daughter said about her.
    Probably not.
    Afterall, who knows us better than family?

    Reply

    • Rebekah S.

      August 7, 2022 at 3:57 pm

      This article shouldn’t make up for what her daughter said about her because what her daughter says about her is irrelevant to her politics. One of her daughters have said what SHE thinks about her.

      Guess what. I am one of her OTHER daughters…and yes, no one knows her better than her family. Kelli Stargel is an incredible mother, not that her mothering should matter in this discussion. But she is also an incredible leader with great courage and conviction, and loves ALL of her kids, to include the daughter who has spoken out against her. How about you stick to the politics and leave the parental judging to her children. Thanks.

      Reply

  • tom palmer

    August 6, 2022 at 9:23 pm

    I guess he wants to be re-elected so it makes sense politicallly, similar to the stances of his predecessor took. The Florida Senate, such that it is,is supposed to sort out this farago.

    Reply

  • Just a comment

    August 8, 2022 at 4:10 pm

    Education and crime.becane religion free will vs oppressed.
    Good luck with that stance
    In real life you can not hold out a bill without someone eventually ripping it from you.

    Reply

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