Campbell Out. Bird In. Atwater Scared? (Hardly)

Okay, so the political media blogs are agog over Skip Campbell dropping out.

Marc Caputo has a pretty good write up on the Miami Herald’s Naked Politics blog – which says in part:

The former Broward Democratic senator who launched a much-talk, little-action campaign against incoming Republican Senate President Jeff Atwater of North Palm Beach has all but officially withdrawn from the race, leaving behind hard feelings with incoming Democratic Senate leader Al Lawson.

“Skip is pretty much out of it. I’ve had difficulty reaching him to make it official,” said Lawson. “I’m not sure Skip was fully into it anyway. He liked the publicity, but he wasn’t campaigning real hard.”

Atwater is going to be Senate President, and that fact means there will be some come uppance for the Democrats. As noted in my previous post on this subject a few weeks ago:

There is an unspoken tradition in the Florida Legislature that incoming leaders of both parties tend to get a pass during the election preceding their term. With Jeff Atwater designated as the Republican candidate for Senate President the next two years, tradition would give him a pass this year. So bucking that tradition was sticking a thumb in the Republican eye.


Okay, so maybe Lawson thought it would be a good idea to smooth over some of these ruffled feathers – maybe let Atwater cruise to an easy victory. Find a token name who is willing to sacrifice him or herself.


Caputo reported in a later post that Lawson not only found an opponent, in Ft. Lauderdale Realtor Linda Bird, but is spinning her:

“This will scare Jeff Atwater,” said Lawson, who’s in charge of Democratic senate campaigns. “She’s a professional woman, well-organized. Atwater would rather have had Skip.”

In pushing Bird, Lawson’s strongly suggesting that other candidates won’t have the financial backing of the Capitol City insiders. Also, Lawson said, as a fundraiser herself, she’ll be able to rake in the money.

“If she can raise money for others, she can probably raise it for herself,” Lawson said.

Okay. That type of logic would be good.

Let’s see.

A quick Google search found this wonderful story about her:

Linda’s personal e-mail list reads like a who’s who of movers and shakers in South Florida. Head of Bird Realty for 22 years, she’s found homes for the CEOs of Fortune 500 companies and other powerful folk. She’s been named Woman of the Year by the American Cancer Society and won awards for her volunteer work with the NAACP and Planned Parenthood. Currently, she’s president of the board of directors for Friends of OUR House, raising funds for a treatment center for child victims of sexual assault.

A member of the DNC’s Women’s Leadership Forum and a board member of the Florida Democratic Professionals Council, Linda’s been a foot soldier for Dems in every presidential contest over the past 16 years — even as she raised two daughters.

Okay, so I understand Lawson’s perspective… but wait, what’s this down further in this same story?

I’ve raised close to $23,000 as a Hillary volunteer by encouraging others to donate.


$23,000 for Hillary Clinton. Wow. That’s .. uh… nice?

Jeff Atwater had raised $1.6 MILLION by the end of March, and the next report will come in this week — he could raise more than $2 million by the time the election ends.

$2 million. $23 thousand.

Yup, Senator Lawson. I don’t think Senator Atwater is getting any sleep tonight.

About Jim Johnson

Editor and publisher of The State of Sunshine.
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