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Three Florida races make National Journal’s latest House rankings

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The Hotline’s Tim Sahd has some updated House race rankings at National Journal. Check out the 30 most competitive congressional races across the country, and what makes them so competitive, now that Democrats have preserved the late Rep. John Murtha’s seat in Pennsylvania and the latest round of House primaries, held on Tuesday night, are behind us.

Here are the Florida House races on the list:

23. Florida-08 Alan Grayson (D) (23)
GOP ex-state Sen. Dan Webster‘s surprising entry into the race further jumbled an already fuzzy GOP primary picture. Many expect that he and businessman Bruce O’Donoghue will be the top contenders for the GOP nod, but state Rep. Kurt Kelly believes geography — he’s the only candidate from outside of Orlando — gives him the opportunity to break through. He also claims he’s the only candidate aggressive enough to take on the combative Grayson. The first real test of this newly altered race will come on 7/15, when 2ndQ FEC reports are due. If Webster registers a big number and the others show a dropoff, that’ll be a sign that Webster’s the 800-pound gorilla in this race.
26. Florida-24 Suzanne Kosmas (D) (24)
There’s no question that Kosmas is vulnerable, but all three GOP candidates here have problems. Ex-Winter Park Commis. Karen Diebel has attacked ex-Ruth’s Chris CEO Craig Miller for being soft on immigration, a charge that Miller denies. Meanwhile, state Rep. Sandy Adams and Diebel have fundraising problems. And even grassroots GOPers — like RedState’s Erick Erickson — have questions about Diebel’s past. Will one of these candidates get their act together by primary day?
27. Florida-02 Allen Boyd (D) (–)
It wasn’t always a given that Boyd would face a tough re-election fight this year; in fact, no top-tier Republicans stepped up to run against him. But the party apparently doesn’t need a first-rate challenger, as funeral home owner Steve Southerland (R) released a poll from mid-April showing him with a double-digit lead over Boyd. Just as telling: Boyd has yet to refute those results with a survey of his own. While this is a bad sign for Boyd, it’s not the only one. He knows he’s vulnerable and has been airing TV ads for months in an attempt to boost his image. It has not helped matters that he voted for the health care law. Alone, that would be a treacherous vote in such a GOP-leaning CD. But worse, the bill included education loan provisions that led to the cutting of 700 jobs at a local Sallie Mae facility. And before Boyd can even think about Republican challengers, he must first defeat underfunded state Sen. Al Lawson (D). Things are not looking good for Boyd.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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