Anthony Sabatini challenging Dan Webster in CD 11
Despite accusations of absenteeism, Anthony Sabatini holds a slim lead in the crowded CD 7 Primary.

He lost a GOP Primary to Cory Mills in 2020. But he's got a long history in Lake County to build upon.

It looks like Anthony Sabatini will make another run for Congress. But this time, he plans to take on U.S. Rep. Dan Webster in a Republican Primary.

“I’m running for U.S. Congress in Florida’s 11th District — join my America First campaign & help defeat the corrupt (Joe) Biden regime,” he tweeted.

The Lake County Republican Party Chair announced Monday he will challenge Webster in Florida’s 11th Congressional District. The move comes months after Sabatini lost to now-U.S. Rep. Cory Mills, a Winter Park Republican, for an open House seat representing Florida’s 7th Congressional District. Mills won an eight-candidate Primary with almost 38% of the vote, with Sabatini a distant second, notching under 24%.

But Sabatini notably did not live in CD 7. The former state Representative and Eustis City Commissioner has won election in Lake County before.

Webster, though, said he’s ready for another challenge from the far right. He stressed his own history, leading Republicans in the 1990s to capture a majority in the Florida House that it still holds today. Webster first won election to Congress in 2010, defeating incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson.

“Florida has benefited from conservative leaders focused on working hard and getting results,” Webster said.

“From ending the Democrats’ 100-year reign and ushering in the Republican leadership Florida’s enjoyed for 25 years, to taking on John Boehner and the Washington establishment and defending our Constitutional rights, sanctity of life and family values while getting millions returned to my constituents, my record of fighting for our conservative values is clear. I never take re-election for granted. I work hard every day to serve my constituents and am focused on tackling the numerous crises created by President Biden and holding his administration accountable.”

Webster last year fended off a Primary challenge from blogger Laura Loomer, though the 7-percentage-point margin of victory was closer than many expected. But Loomer intends to run again, potentially dividing the far-right with Sabatini.

For now, Sabatini is directing his signature invective at Democratic President Biden, who is also on the ballot. In a video announcing his candidacy, Sabatini attacked President Biden as “the most corrupt President in American history.”

Nearly 41% of CD 11 voters are registered Republicans, according to the most to L2 voter data, while fewer than 30% are registered Democrats.

About 10,000 voters have changed their party affiliation over the last four years from the GOP to something else, data shows. That’s more than half of all party registration changes in the same time period. Just under 6,000 of the party changes were those formerly registered as Democrats. The changes could mean partisan voters in the district are becoming less so, which may not bode well for Sabatini in a likely election-deciding GOP Primary.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


  • SJC Berlusconi Greaseball Bill McSewer

    April 3, 2023 at 9:04 am

    Laura Loomer is a nut job. Needs euthanasia for the sake of human kind. Waste of organic material. Waste of carbon atoms.

  • Richard Davis

    April 5, 2023 at 9:28 pm

    Sabatini is nothing but noise. In his short political career he has accomplished nothing. He gets elected to Eustis city council to do nothing but make a lot of noise to propel him into the Florida. What did he do in the florida house? Nothing but put in some pretty good legislation only to sabatoge his ability to possible get anything passed by resorting to name calling and alienation of the same people needed to get any of it passed. He lost committee assignments for not showing up for them, then would blame everyone else for his own failures to lead. I believe he sabatoged his own legislation. As opposed to take the path of showing leadership. Sabatini decided to take the path of being an obstructionist to his own success. He used that same ridiculous mindset to paint himself as some savior from establishment politics, by making noise, alienation and showing a propensity for not even knowing how anything worked in government. He runs for Congress. First running against Webster, then he switches to the 7th CD running the most aggressive and pointless campaigns I have ever seen. He was thick on screaming about all the problems we had and how the establishment was failing us, but he was very weak on any solutions. He was unaware of any deep rooted issues going on around the world, nor did he really have any grasp of real issues domestically other than what we all already knew. He loses thar race for congress only to run for lake county Republican exectitutive Committee Chair. To only once again abandon that to run for congress again and again against webster. His new campaign for congress once again is doing the same thing the last one did. He takes current solutions other house members have already initiated the conversation or legislation on, and tries to make you think he will be the champion of if elected. This time around its starting with stopping foreign entities and governments from buying our farm land and land around our defense locations. I’m sure he will once again try to make everyone feel he is strong and successful, when in reality he has shown nothing but weaknesses and ineffectiveness.

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