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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

13th District has two new candidates (one you've already heard about)



The much-watched 13th Congressional District has been relatively quiet lately, but tonight, the first Republican in the race will officially kick off his campaign.

Mark Bircher, 62, an airline pilot and retired U.S. Marine Corps brigadier general, will cut the ribbon on his campaign at 6 p.m. in Pinellas Park at Quaker Steak and Lube, 10400 49th St. 

Bircher finished third in the 2014 GOP special-election primary following the death of longtime congressman C.W. "Bill" Young.

He is the first Republican to jump in the race for the recently redrawn district, which now leans much more Democratic. Incumbent David Jolly is running for U.S Senate. Former St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker has said he's interested in possibly running, but hasn't made a final decision yet.

On the Democratic side, former governor Charlie Crist announced his candidacy and filed his statement of organization in October, but didn't get around to filing his statement of candidacy until Monday. Former Obama administration official Eric Lynn is also in the race. 

The next campaign fundraising totals will be released Jan. 31. 

[Last modified: Tuesday, December 15, 2015 11:56am]


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