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Senate District 8

Polls galore: Republicans lead in state Senate Districts 18 & 23; race still close in SD 8

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Republicans in two state Senate districts have big leads over their Democratic opponents, while a third faces a tough race to the finish line. St. Pete Polls gauged voter support in Senate Districts 8, 18, and 23. The surveys — commissioned by FloridaPolitics.com — showed Majority Leader Dana Young has a six-point lead over Democrat Bob Buesing in Senate District 18; while Rep. Greg Steube has a nine-point lead over Frank Alcock in Senate District 23. While those races have…

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Calling BS on the way Gainesville Police handled Keith Perry video

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State Rep. Keith Perry found himself in the middle of a maelström this week after a video emerged showing the Gainesville Republican striking a man during a dispute over campaign yard signs. But the circumstances around the video suggest deeper motives might be at play. If you’ve seen the 30-minute clip, released by the Gainesville Police Department Wednesday, you know it consists of three things: the guy, identified as Norman Leppla, pushing Perry; Leppla allegedly spitting in Perry’s face; Perry…

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Keith Perry apologizes for striking a man after a dispute over campaign signs

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A disagreement over a yard sign turned into a physical altercation between Rep. Keith Perry and a Gainesville resident over the weekend, according to records released by Gainesville police Wednesday. The Gainesville Police Department released the incident report, surveillance video and a sworn complaint affidavit related to a Saturday incident involving Perry. In an email Wednesday, a police spokesperson said while the department generally does not release information on “open criminal cases where an arrest has not yet been made,”…

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Keith Perry says alleged battery incident resolved, calls it a ‘misunderstanding’

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A Gainesville state lawmaker said a complaint against him alleging battery has been withdrawn. In a statement Monday evening, Rep. Keith Perry said an incident over the weekend involving an alleged battery “has been resolved.” According to police reports, Perry was involved in an incident Saturday that included battery and trespassing. The weapons used in the incident, according to the one-page report, were “hands, feet, fists, spitting.” The incident occurred in the 2200 block of West University Avenue in Gainesville.…

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Donations from committee backing Rod Smith came within weeks of FDP ad buys in SD 8

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A political committee tied to Democrat Rod Smith has given more than $393,000 to the Florida Democratic Party since May, around the same time party began airing TV ads supporting him. The state party can purchase ad time at a more affordable rate than candidates’ committees, but state law prohibits political parties and affiliated committees from accepting contributions that have been earmarked for a particular candidate. Independent Leadership for Florida, the political committee backing Smith’s Senate District 8 bid, gave $393,900 to…

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Rod Smith drops 3rd ad in SD 8, taking direct aim at Keith Perry

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The Rod Smith campaign released its third ad in the Senate District 8 campaign Thursday, and this one takes direct aim at his opponent, Republican Rep. Keith Perry. “In North Central Florida, our economy and way of life depend on safe water,” Smith says in the ad. “My opponent Keith Perry voted to ignore local communities and let polluters pump toxic chemicals into the ground, right next to the water we depend on and without disclosing the chemicals they’re using.”…

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Rod Smith raises $168K in May for SD 8 bid

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Rod Smith posted another strong fundraising month, his campaign announced Friday The Alacuha Democrat raised $168,695 in May. Smith raised $52,695 for his campaign fund, and an another $116,000 was raised by Independent Leadership for Florida, the political committee backing Smith’s Senate District 8 bid. “I appreciate the continued support from people across North Central Florida and the state,” said Smith in a statement. “We are working hard to build a strong grassroots campaign that will get out our message of…

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