Jane Castor lands bipartisan list of endorsers for re-election campaign
Jane Castor makes it official, she is seeking a second term.

'Together, we have made great progress in our city and I am committed to continuing to work hard for the people of Tampa.'

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor on Thursday rolled out a sweeping list of endorsements from 20 current or former elected officials and community leaders.

The bipartisan list of backers includes three Republicans. Though Tampa municipal races are nonpartisan, Castor is a registered Democrat.

Republican endorsers include Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister, Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan and former Hillsborough County Tax Collector Doug Belden.

“I am honored to receive these endorsements,” Castor said. “Together, we have made great progress in our city and I am committed to continuing to work hard for the people of Tampa. I look forward to serving as your mayor for another term.”

Castor officially launched her re-election campaign last month at Hotel Haya in Ybor City with a strong coalition of support from local elected officials, community leaders, residents, friends and family. The campaign said more than 200 attended the kickoff. Castor’s host committee included more than 160 people.

Castor was first elected in 2019, defeating the late philanthropist David Straz in Tampa’s costliest mayoral contest. Straz spent nearly $5 million, most of it his own money, while Castor ran a $1.2 million campaign.

Hillsborough County Commissioner Harry Cohen, who ran against Castor four years ago, is among her endorsers.

“I have known Jane Castor for many years and have worked with her in numerous capacities. She is a steadfast protector of Tampa and our residents,” Cohen said.

“Throughout her first term, she tackled the toughest issues our community faces: Modernizing and improving our transportation and stormwater infrastructure, aggressively working to build affordable housing through a lens of sustainability and resiliency, and developing a workforce of the future. Mayor Castor is the right person to lead Tampa now and into the future.”

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor also lends her support.

“Tampa deserves a reliable, committed, and principled leader as Mayor. Mayor Jane Castor has devoted her life to the service of our great city. Together, we have delivered investments in safer streets, affordable housing and resilient neighborhoods,” the Congresswoman said. “I trust Mayor Jane Castor to lift up every neighbor and keep Tampa special — I wholeheartedly endorse her re-election.”

Other endorsers include:

— State Sen. Darryl Rouson.

— State Rep. Michele Rayner-Goolsby.

— Former Hillsborough County Commissioner, state Senator and USF President Betty Castor.

— Former state Sen. Janet Cruz.

— Former state Sen. Arthenia Joyner.

— Former state Rep. Ed Narain.

— Former Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn.

— Hillsborough County Commissioner Pat Kemp.

— Hillsborough County Commissioner Gwen Myers.

— Former Hillsborough County Commissioner Mariella Smith.

— Hillsborough County Property Appraiser Bob Henriquez.

— Hillsborough County Tax Collector Nancy Millan.

— Hillsborough County Clerk of Court Cindy Stuart.

— Former Tampa City Council member Tom Scott.

— Former Under Secretary of Commerce in the Barack Obama administration Frank Sanchez.

So far, Castor appears to have an easy path to re-election. Three candidates have filed to run against her — Jeff Godsell, Andrew Maurice Hill Sr. and Belinda Noah. Only Godsell has posted fundraising activity, but has brought in just $100. Castor, meanwhile, raised more than $117,000 in December alone to her campaign and affiliated political committee, Tampa Strong.

She retains $222,687 in her committee and just under $50,000 in her campaign account.

It’s worth noting, however, that Hill just entered the race this month and has not yet filed campaign finance reports.

Tampa’s municipal elections will be held on March 7.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of FloridaPolitics.com, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


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