Scott Maddox vs. Steve Southerland?
Former Tallahassee mayor Scott Maddox is a talented politician, ambitious, and only 43 in a state where Democrats have a short bench of political talent. Maddox, the former state Democratic chairman, has fallen short in campaigns for governor, attorney general, and agriculture commissioner, but few Democrats expect him to call it quits in politics.
So what's next? We hear some Maddox allies are urging him to run for Tallahassee city commissioner Mark Mustian's seat, which is coming open. But others thing his best move is to take on U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, the one-term Republican incumbent from Panama City. The district could get a bit friendlier for Democrats after redistricting, the thinking goes, and Southerland did himself no favors when he recently sounded like his $174,000 congressional salary wasn't worth the hassle of security threats and other issues.
"There is law-enforcement security in this room right now, and why is that?" Southerland told his a town hall meeting in late August. "If you think this job pays too much, with those kinds of risks and cutting me off from my family business, I'll just tell you: This job don't mean that much to me. I had a good life in Panama City."