The only thing remaining for Jack Latvala to do to be a candidate for governor is to say the words: “I am a candidate for governor.”
That will come on Wednesday.
The state Senator from Clearwater on Friday filed the paperwork to qualify as a gubernatorial candidate in next year’s election.
He joins Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam as the most prominent candidates in the Republican primary.
There is speculation that House Speaker Richard Corcoran will enter the race following next year’s legislative session. U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis is also reportedly considering a run for the nomination.
Latvala tweeted a picture of 5-year old Cooper Bishop who presented the candidate’s paperwork to the Florida Division of Elections Friday. Bishop is the son of a Latvala aide who lives in Tallahassee. Under the picture Latvala wrote: “My papers were filed by 5-years old Rays fan Cooper Bishop!”
Latvala alluded last month at a fundraiser to the possibility that he would enter the race. He even set a date for the announcement–August 16.
He has scheduled three events on Wednesday–in Hialeah, Clearwater and Panama City–to make his official announcement.
Latvala said little today about entering the race saying he would have plenty to talk about next week. He said all he did today was to file the paperwork to open a campaign account.
Latvala has been raising money for his run for governor through a political action committee–the Florida Leadership Committee. The group started August with $3.8 million in cash on hand. Putnam’s campaign and committee have more than $12 million.
On the Democratic side, former U.S. Rep Gwen Graham, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and businessman Chris King from Winter Park have declared they will seek their party’s nomination.