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Republican Liberty Caucus of Central East Florida Message Board › Is Ginny a casualty of the tea party movement?

Is Ginny a casualty of the tea party movement?

A former member
Post #: 171
Brown-Waite drops out of race; Hernando sheriff will run for Congress
By Tony Marrero, Times Staff Writer
Posted: Apr 30, 2010 01:01 PM
______________________________________­__


BROOKSVILLE -- U.S. Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite cannot run for re-election due to health problems, the Brooksville Republican announced Friday.
Her proxy: Hernando Sheriff Richard Nugent, who qualified on Friday, the last day of the qualifying period, by paying the $10,440 filing fee.
Brown-Waite and Nugent offered a joint statement at midday.
"As I have prepared for my campaign, I have been troubled by persistent health problems and have come to the disappointing and sad conclusion that I cannot run for reelection," Brown-Waite said.
"There are simply too many unresolved issues around my health and my pancreas in particular. As of this morning, my doctors are still undecided about what course to pursue next for my treatments.
"I encouraged Sheriff Nugent to run because I know him to be a strong conservative who will continue my fight for veterans and seniors," she continued. "This past week, Rich told me he would stand in my place for election to Congress. On Monday I will to ask the Secretary of State to withdraw my name from the ballot.
"As I go forward with my medical treatments, I would continue to ask for your prayers for my family and me."
Nugent, who lives in Spring Hill, said he decided to run after talking over the issue with his wife, Wendy.
"I am deeply honored by the trust Ginny has placed in me," Nugent said. "As Wendy and I discussed beginning this campaign and what it would mean for our family, we could not turn down this call to duty at such a serious time for our country. We will run a vigorous campaign based on the conservative values shared by so many of our neighbors in Hernando County and throughout the 5th District."
In her fourth term, Brown-Waite has won re-election with ease, with little challenge from candidates within her own party and handily defeating Democratic challengers.
Jason Sager, a Brooksville Republican closely aligned with the tea party, and Jim Piccillo, a Democrat from Lutz, have also qualified for the race.
"Now we know who the new establishment candidate is," Sager said of Friday's development. "They want to make sure they have their power structure protected with someone who's close to the party."
Sager said the departure of an entrenched incumbent vastly improves his chances to make it to the general election.
"But I would expect the same level of support from the party I was receiving before. Zero percent," Sager said. "But maybe Mr. Nugent will be more willing to debate me on the issues than Ms. Brown-Waite was."
Nugent enlisted in the Air Force at the age of 18 and served six years in the Illinois National Guard and then a dozen years as an police officer in a Chicago suburb.
He served as deputy sheriff in Hernando County and won his first term as sheriff in 2000. Wendy Nugent is a teacher for the Hernando school system. All three of the couple's sons are officers in the Army.
Reporter Tony Marrero can be reached at (352) 584-5537 or tmarrero@sptimes.com.

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