Now in its fifth year, SaintPetersBlog/FloridaPolitics.com is offering its annual list of the Most Powerful Politicians in Tampa Bay.
In compiling the 2017 list, FloridaPolitics.com queried several of the region’s leading political consultants, activists, bloggers, operatives and local lobbyists to name who they consider the 25 most powerful pols in the area. No suggested names were provided.
For this exercise, the Tampa Bay region is defined as Pinellas, Hillsborough and Pasco, but can also include Hernando, Polk or Sarasota, particularly if politicians from those counties impact either Pinellas or Hillsborough.
Among those on the 2017 panel: Tucker/Hall president Bill Carlson, columnist Joe Henderson, Travis Norton of the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, former state Rep. Edwin Narain, investigative journalist Alan Cohn, Strategic Campaigns founder Nick Janovsky, Momentum Strategy Group president Brock Mikosky, Matt Florell of St. Pete Polls, Laura Boehmer of Southern Strategy Group, former state Rep. Seth McKeel, also of Southern Strategy Group, political consultants Carrie Henriquez and Michelle Schorsch.
Being listed first on a panelist’s list earned 25 points, second earned 24 points and so on. Listing as 25th received one point. Points were then added up and — voilà — the list was created.
In the top four or five slots might be who you’d expect. But once you pass that, the list starts to get truly fascinating.
And a few names not included could indeed be a surprise.
With that introduction, we ask you to please stay tuned to SaintPetersBlog.com throughout the week as we count down the 25 most influential political figures in Tampa Bay. Follow the list on Twitter with #Top25InTB.