Calling all you commies, leftists and sneaky, secret socialists lurking from Pensacola Beach to Perdido Key: Have you ever wanted to have a say in a Florida Republican primary? Well this is your chance!
Because according to stalwart PNJ political reporter Jim Little, the race for District 2 of the Florida House of Representatives is the only open Republican primary for a state-level office in the entire state of Florida. So warm up your ballots, comrades!
As Little explained in his story last week, “under state law, Florida’s party primaries are closed unless all candidates in a race are from the same party and there is no declared write-in candidate.” And since no Democrats or write-ins registered to run for Florida House District 2 (which bundles Pensacola Beach, Gulf Breeze, the city of Pensacola, Myrtle Grove, Warrington and Perdido Key), all you pot-smokin’ peaceniks get to pick between Alex Andrade and Greg Merk, the two Republicans running to replace Frank White, the current state representative who is now a candidate for Florida attorney general.
Why is this a big deal? Because it almost never happens.
But whoever usually finds phony write-in candidates to rig the game in Florida’s corrupt closed primary system must have gotten too drunk on Bushwackers to remember to do their job this year. So now, all voters, regardless of party affiliation, will get the freedom to weigh in on the candidates. Which means the candidates might have to actually give a dang about appealing to a genuinely diverse group of voters.
District 2 has all sorts of folks in it. Black folks and brown folks. Super rich folks and desperately poor folks. It’s got fishermen and tattoo artists. Lawyers and tree-huggers. Hipsters, yuppies, veterans and vegans and even folks like the Grand Punk Rock Potentate of the Westside, PNJ columnist Troy Moon.
It’s a beautiful and complex district and there’s no simple way to categorize or label…