After weeks of weighing a run at the Legislature’s upper chamber, Merritt Island Rep. Tyler Sirois has chosen to defend the seat he already has, clearing a path for fellow GOP House member Randy Fine.
In a statement Friday, Sirois put to rest speculation around a potential campaign for Senate District 19. The district’s current Senator, Rockledge Republican Debbie Mayfield, will term out in 2024.
He did not mention Fine — a self-described “conservative firebrand” who launched a campaign for SD 19 last month with a formidable leadership team in place — as factoring into his decision. The two would have competed in a Primary. So far, no Democratic candidate has filed to run.
Since filing Jan. 19, Fine has racked up a wave of endorsements from current and former elected state officials and several organizations. Fine also had nearly $484,000 in his political committee by the end of the month. Sirois, meanwhile, had about $32,000.
Sirois said he’d given “serious consideration” to seeking Mayfield’s seat in 2024 but decided his “best course” now is to continue serving in House District 31.
“As I stand for re-election to my next term in the House, I remain focused on expanding vocational and technical training opportunities for students, cleaning up the Indian River Lagoon, and supporting our law enforcement and veterans,” he said.
“On behalf of my constituents, I want to express my gratitude to Sen. Debbie Mayfield for her many years of true and dedicated public service as she nears the end of her term. I look forward to working ahead and serving under the leadership of Speaker Paul Renner and Chairman Danny Perez as a member of the Florida House of Representatives.”
The 2022 Legislative Session proved Sirois’ most fruitful since he won a seat in the House four years earlier. He snagged his first chairmanship, taking the lead on the pivotal Congressional Redistricting Subcommittee, and scored millions in funding for Brevard County, Indian River Lagoon projects and efforts to help the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission remove derelict vessels from state waterways.
For the 2023 Legislative Session, Sirois is chairing the Regulatory Reform and Economic Development Committee. Renner also appointed him to the Florida Defense Support Task Force.