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The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Mayfield guns for Ag Commissioner

26

February

UPDATE 2: Democratic sources tell the Buzz that U.S. Rep. Allen Boyd of Monticello is also considering the seat. Boyd is a fifth-generation farmer and among the more conservative Dems on the Hill. He's also friendly with Charles Bronson.

UPDATE: Sen. Carey Baker, R-Eustis, says he's is planning on running, too. "I'm considering it very, very carefully. It's an exciting department that does so much."

State Rep. Stan Mayfield, the Vero Beach Republican who aborted his run for Congress in deference to Sen. Bill Posey, plans to run for Agriculture Commissioner in 2010. And an upcoming vote on a controversial gun rights bill could put him under the microscope.

"I'm very interested in it, and leaning toward doing exactly that," Mayfield told the Buzz moments ago. "I believe I'm pretty qualified," added the chairman of the Environment and Natural Resources Council.

Mayfield's entrance would raise the stakes in what could be a juicy GOP primary. State Rep. Marty Bowen of Haines City has already opened a campaign account and other Republicans are eying the job. Incumbent Charles Bronson cannot seek re-election due to term limits.

One big test for Mayfield looms in the House: The so-called guns-to-work bill. He was one of the deciding votes against the highly controversial measure last year and drew high praise from the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

But Mayfield's view is changing. "It's a much simpler bill that it was last year," he said. "Everyone keeps calling it the guns-to-work bill. The fact of the matter is it's the guns-locked-up-in-your-car bill."

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 2:13pm]

    

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