New website claims to expose HD 15 GOP hopeful Paul Renner’s “leftist” leanings

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Surprising as it may sound, the caustic rhetoric surrounding House District 15 has reached new heights in the final weekend before Tuesday’s GOP primary. is first attack website to go after Republican candidate Paul Renner, a “conservative watchdog “claiming to be able to reveal the Jacksonville attorney’s “leftist place on the political spectrum.”

Renner faces GOP business executive Jay Fant leads in an increasingly combative — and expensive – primary for the district covering the western part of Jacksonville and much of Duval County.

Sponsored by the Conservative Leadership Fund, the “expose website” claims to be devoted to “unveiling the truth” about Renner, pointing out his continued silence on several matters of his record.

The website poses several questions, asking Renner to explain a donation made to “one of the most liberal Democrats in Florida history,” as well as contributions received from gambling interests and the actions of various clients of his law firm.

One of the site’s accusations centers on a radio appearance where Renner said he supports “de-coupling” of card rooms from pari-mutuels, essentially allowing the expansion of gambling across the state. Yet the website points out that Renner maintained he was “undecided” about the issue in response to a Florida Family Policy Council questionnaire.

Conservative Leadership Fund, a PAC chaired by Republican political consultant Mike Hanna, is – in a roundabout way – connected to the state’s trial lawyers.

Earlier this month, the Fund received a $10,000 donation from One on One Communications, a Miami-based firm directed by Joe Navas funded by Citizens for Florida Prosperity — a group receiving support from various law firms, as well thousands of dollars from Florida Justice PAC, the political arm of the state’s trial lawyers.

Ironically, Conservative Leadership Fund was also behind a direct mailer decrying Renner as a “trial lawyer” adding that Jacksonville needed more jobs, not “more lawsuits.”

questions for paul renner (Large)


Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, 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.