The latest bout of redistricting drama has Democratic Rep. Kevin Rader and Sen. Joe Abruzzo looking to trade places in the fall.
Rader, who is in his second term in House District 81, announced Wednesday he will forgo re-election and instead run in the newly redrawn Senate District 29 with Abruzzo’s blessing.
“Joe Abruzzo is an incredible state senator. He has been a champion for our public schools, for seniors, and for all of Palm Beach,” Rader said. “It is an honor to stand side-by-side with him today and to have worked, hand in hand, with him in fighting for democratic values in the legislature and to now run in his newly vacated seat with his support.”
Abruzzo, who has held his current SD 25 seat in the Senate since 2012, said he will now run for the seat currently held by Rader.
“While I am currently listed as the senator in this seat, the fact is that, thanks to the court approved maps, I do not live in the district and as such, will be running for State House instead,” he said in a press release. “I wholeheartedly endorse Kevin as the best-qualified person to represent the people of this district.”
The seat Abruzzo currently represents, which covers southern Palm Beach County, was split in during redistricting, with the section he calls home being drawn into the SD 31, where Democratic Sen. Jeff Clemens is running for re-election.
Rader will bring about $40,000 in campaign cash to the Senate contest, including $5,500 raised in May, while Abruzzo, who has not yet filed his May campaign finance report, will bring about $37,000 to his House campaign.
Both SD 29 and HD 81 are safe seats for Democrats and, as of Wednesday, Rader and Abruzzo were the only candidates filed for those districts, though there are rumors Democratic Rep. Irv Slosberg is also eyeing a run in SD 29.