Dane Eagle draws second opponent

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State Rep. Dane Eagle, currently fighting DUI allegations, may have drawn another Republican opponent in his re-election effort.

Fort Myers Attorney Terry Bowen Cramer, who filed last year to challenge Rep. Matt Caldwell in House District 79, will instead face Eagle in House District 77.

In September, executive Jim Roach had also filed as a Republican to run for the District 77 seat, which includes the City of Cape Coral and some precincts in North Fort Myers.

Cramer initially filed for the east Lee County race expecting Caldwell to run for the state Senate, if Majority Leader Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto chose to pursue the U.S. House.

Now that Benacquisto is seeking re-election to the Senate, Caldwell decided to also run for re-election.

“I never intended to run against Matt,” said Cramer. “I think he’s done a really good job. But I still want to serve and I think I have something to offer, and the Cape Coral post seems like the best place.”

Refusing to comment on Eagle’s DUI charge, Cramer insists it was not a factor is his decision.

“I’ll let the legal process play out,” he said. “I wish him the best of luck.”

Cramer told reporters he rents a condominium on the dividing line between the two districts, but the lease is up in the summer. He intends to move into District 77.

As to why he has yet to do any real fundraising, Cramer explained that he wanted to wait to see how the incumbent situation ends up before kicking off a campaign.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, 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.