For nearly 40 minutes on The Capitolist’s Facebook LIVE broadcast Tuesday afternoon, Florida House District 7 candidate Jason Shoaf spoke candidly about his experiences and views seeking his first elective office. Shoaf is engaged in a competitive primary with three other GOP candidates seeking to replace former state representative Halsey Beshears. Beshears was tapped by Governor Ron DeSantis to run the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation in January.
Republicans and Democrats in House District 7 will choose their respective nominees next Tuesday, April 9th. The far-ranging district includes precincts far to the east of Perry, Florida, and includes Monticello to the east of Tallahassee, before cutting below the state capital to pick up Wakulla and Franklin counties to the south, then runs west all the way to Port Saint Joe, immediately adjacent to Mexico Beach. A substantial portion of the westernmost parts of the district, including Shoaf’s home in Port Saint Joe, were devastated by Hurricane Michael last summer.
Hurricane recovery remains a major issue in the HD 7 primary campaign, and Shoaf spent considerable time during the interview outlining his priorities for helping the region recover.
“The timber industry has been devastated and our economy depends on timber,” Shoaf said during the interview. “You are talking about hundreds of people who their entire retirement is gone.”
Shoaf, who is married and the father of twins, also shared about his faith, describing himself as a Christian who gave his life to Christ at a young age. That plays heavily into his views on core conservative issues such as abortion.
“For those that think it’s a convenience to end that life, shame on you,” Shoaf said. “For those who think it’s health care, we’ve seen some billboards about that pop up in Tallahassee, shame on them.”
Shoaf said his campaign is focusing heavily on turning out his voters during the final week, and urged Republicans to go to the polls.
“If you want a politician that can speak beautifully and give you an amazing speech, I’m not your person,” said Shoaf. “But I can shoot straight with you.”