Alex Sink may be hoping to boost in her campaign for governor by naming a running mate early, and speculation among her backers is focusing on former state Sen. Rod Smith.
Sink filed her qualifying papers for the office Wednesday morning, and is expected to be the only politically prominent candidate in the Democratic primary.
Her campaign has been contacting key supporters for advice on a candidate for lieutenant governor, a step usually taken later on in the race.
Because Sink is the presumptive nominee, party activists said, there’s no reason she shouldn’t act quickly.
“You get two for the price of one – two people raising money, two people giving speeches and contacting voters,” said Democratic strategist Screven Watson.
Former University of South Florida President Betty Castor, a close Sink political ally, said she didn’t know what candidates were being considered, but, “I know there’s some conversation going on, and the fact that they’re beginning the process now suggests they’re leaning toward an early pick.”
In contested primaries, running mates usually are named after the primary. Florida law sets the deadline as nine days after the primary, which will be held Aug. 24.