HD 113 candidate disqualified for bouncing check fighting to get back on the ballot

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Laura Rivero Levey, the Republican legislative candidate who was knocked out of the race for House District 113 after her qualifying check bounced, is fighting to get back on the ballot.

Hours after her opponent, Democratic incumbent David Richardson, took to Facebook to proclaim that the Florida Division of Elections had called to inform him that his opponent failed to qualify, Levey’s camp is maintaining that there was more than enough money in the account held at Suntrust to cover the $1,781.82 qualifying fee. Republican party officials working with Levey say that the check being returned for insufficient funds is a bank error.

“This was an error made by the bank beyond the control of the candidate,” said Susan Hepworth, communications director for the Republican Party of Florida. “We are working closely with the bank and Division of Elections to get it corrected immediately.”

According to the latest campaign finance report, the RPOF contributed $2,000 on June 12 to Levey’s account — presumably to cover the qualifying fee.

Despite the GOP’s protestations, Levey’s candidacy status was unchanged as of Wednesday afternoon.

“She did not qualify,” said Brittany Lesser, spokeswoman for the Division of Elections.

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.