This week, both Jim Waldman and Gary Farmer breathed a sigh of relief as perhaps one of the most formidable challengers for the state Senate seat they covet made it clear she is staying put.
Kristin Jacobs, former mayor of Broward County and current Florida House member, said she is not going to run for Senate. In September, the first-term representative from Coconut Creek filed for re-election to HD 96.
“I just got elected to serve as a House member and feel I have an obligation to stay here as long as voters will have me. Running for a higher office at this time, just didn’t feel like the right thing to do,” Jacobs told FloridaPolitics.com Tuesday.
Jacobs refined her political skills through nearly two decades serving on a primarily Democratic Broward County commission.
She earned national-level recognition for her work on environmental issues, highlighted with an appointment by President Barack Obama as the only Floridian on the 26-member White House Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience.
Jacobs would have indeed given Farmer, a Fort Lauderdale attorney, and Waldman, a former state House representative, stiff competition since Jacobs won her seat with 76 percent of the vote. She had also won her previous county commission races with similarly absurd numbers. Jacobs also proved to be a prolific fundraiser.
During the 2015 Regular Session, Jacobs’ first co-sponsored bill was a measure to ban the herbal supplement Kratom, which was listed by the state Drug Enforcement agency as a “drug of concern.”
And while Waldman and Farmer now have only each other – and a slew of Senate maps – to contend with, Democrat Steve Perman, who has been making the rounds in the Coconut Creek-centered district (and seen recently still wearing his House of Representatives lapel pin), will have to wait another few years for his comeback.