New House budget chief, Rep. Seth McKeel, sees influx of campaign cash

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Rep. Seth McKeel was named Oct. 9 as the next House budget chairman, one of the most-powerful positions in the Legislature. And by the time a fund-raising period for legislative candidates ended Oct. 12, McKeel had reeled in $47,545, according to newly filed reports.

McKeel, who is running against no-party candidate Lillian Lima in House District 40, had raised only $48,455 all year before the latest reporting period, which ran from Sept. 29 to Oct. 12. He received contributions during the period from companies and groups ranging from the Florida Police Benevolent Association to the Seminole Tribe of Florida.

Including contributions he received in 2011, McKeel has raised a total of $262,601 for the race. Lima collected $1,490 during the latest period and reported an overall total of $2,622.

Material from the News Service of Florida was used in this report.

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.