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Eric Lynn raises $100K in 4th quarter, $650,000 plus for 2015 in CD13 race

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Congressional District 13 candidate Eric Lynn said Friday that he raised more than $100,000 in the final three months of 2015 in his bid, ending the year with $550,000 in the bank.

“Across Pinellas County, I have received an outpouring of support from voters who want to see meaningful change in Washington and our community,” Lynn said in a news release. “This campaign would not be possible without these supporters who have donated their time and money because they know I will champion policies that reflect Democratic values, make economic security possible for Pinellas families and keep our country secure.”

The campaign reported that they raised over $652,000 since Lynn announced his candidacy last spring. Lynn, 37, is a former Department of Defense adviser for President Barack Obama.

He’s running against former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist to be the Democratic nominee for the Pinellas County congressional seat. Mark Bircher is the lone Republican in the race.

Lynn began working for Obama when the president was still representing Illinois in the U.S. Senate. He campaign for him and moved to the Department of Defense in early 2009 before departing in 2014. He has been making inroads with Pinellas County Democrats since entering the contest, when he became the first Democrat to say he would be challenging GOP incumbent David Jolly.

Things changed last summer dramatically, however, when the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the boundaries of the CD 13 seat were in violation of the Florida Constitution, prompting the Legislature to redraw the district. Previously considered a swing district, it’s now seen as much more Democratic-friendly.

Crist announced after the court ruling that he was eyeing the seat, and officially entered the contest last fall. Crist announced recently that he raised $500,000 in his first three months of the campaign.

Lynn’s campaign team has been criticizing Crist, and in their statement said that Crist’s “fundraising numbers in the fourth quarter were far lower than expected, suggesting a lack of enthusiasm for Crist’s candidacy given his purported name recognition in the District and previous fundraising.”

In contrast, the statement says, “Lynn beat expectations and garnered a strong base of grassroots support for his campaign in the district.”

The statement also says Lynn received contributions from more than 1,100 donors.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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