National Journal: Fla. House Race Most 'Botched' in US

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 03:18 PM

By Lisa Degnen

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Democrats have virtually no chance of winning the Congressional race in Florida's 13th District, the National Journal reports.

Democrats in Florida and Washington bucked the party system to endorse independent candidate Ed Jany for the Tampa area swing seat. But now Jany has dropped out of the race saying that he "wrongly assumed" he could handle his day job and a race for office at the same time.

That move means sitting GOP Rep. David Jolly is almost assured of a win, the Journal reports, calling  the race the most "botched" in the country by Democrats, who had been slightly favored to take the seat.

The seat had been held for many years by Rep. Bill Young, who died last year. In a special election, the well-funded former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Alex Sink was defeated by Jolly in March.

After Sink refused to run again, the party turned to onetime Republican Jany. Jany had to run as an independent because he hadn't been registered long enough as a Democrat. The National Journal says party leaders pressured local NAACP chapter President Manuel Sykes, a Democrat, to drop out of the race to leave the path clear for Jany.

But now Jany is out, and no clear contestant appears to want in.

Sykes has not re-entered the race, telling the Journal Democrats have "a snowball's chance" of winning the seat now. "It's an adventure. It's really a laughable situation."

Katie Prill, National Republican Congressional Committee spokeswoman told the Tampa Bay Times, "Words cannot describe what an epic failure this congressional race has become for the DCCC [Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee] and Florida Democrats.

"After a devastating loss and wasting millions in the special election, one thing remains very clear: President Obama’s toxic agenda has cost the DCCC another seat that they couldn’t afford to lose."

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