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Shevrin Jones’ secretary not ‘fired’ for filing in HD 92 race — per se

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Democratic state Rep. Shevrin Jones’ district secretary left his position to run for House District 92 on July 1, setting up a primary battle for the seat currently held by term-limited Democratic state Rep. Gwendolyn Clarke-Reed.

Sajan Kurian has worn many hats in Broward County politics. Outside of his district secretary role and career in health care, he has served on the Broward County Public Schools task force and was an advisory board member for the Coconut Creek Parks and Recreation Department and the Coconut Creek Multi-Cultural Circle.

“I’ve got tremendous experience,” Kurian said. “I have a lot more to offer the people than anyone else currently running. I’m a doer.”

The statement is a slight jab at Whitney Prescott Rawls, the only other candidate in the race and a close personal friend of Rep. Jones, who has already endorsed Rawls for the seat. While Jones’ allegiances are clear, Kurian said reports that he was fired for filing for the seat are overblown.

“It wasn’t a firing, per se, I was planning to resign anyway,” he said. “I just sent the papers to Tallahassee not knowing it would be approved right away.”

Kurian said he told Jones back in April that he planned to resign his position in the district office at the beginning of August and run for the District 92 seat. Kurian said that at the time, well before Rawls filed, Jones was supportive of the move. Rawls’ filing threw a wrench in the gears, though, forcing Jones’ hand.

“I get it, he grew up with the guy,” Kurian said. “When you’re strong enough doing certain things you pose a threat to other people. I’ve sacrificed a lot doing this and I know I’m doing the right thing – I know what I’m doing.”

Both campaigns are in their infancy, so it’s unclear who will gain traction in the race. Rawls was on the ballot for Pompano Beach City Commission District 4 in 2014, coming in third place in a four-way race won by incumbent Commissioner Ed Phillips, but District 92 covers a lot more ground. Rawls’ first campaign finance report is due July 10 while Kurian’s first due date is in August.

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for SaintPetersBlog and FloridaPolitics.com. While at the University of Florida, Wilson was an editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and after graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to cover business deals for The Hollywood Reporter. Before joining Extensive Enterprises, Wilson covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools.

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