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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

State Sen. Jeremy Ring say he too is exploring a run for governor in 2018



State Sen. Jeremy Ring of Margate confirmed Thursday that he is calling potential funders and conducting his own exploratory campaign for a possible run for the Democratic nomination for governor in 2018.

"No door is closed for me. I am considering it, yes, and am in an exploratory phase. I can't imagine having a decision in 2016."

Ring, whose is retiring from the state Senate because of term limits this year, said he saw Gwen Graham's video announcing her interest in running today and considered it "extraordinarily misleading."

"If you were to do a 'pants on fire' thing, it would be an inferno,'' he said, referring to PolitiFact Florida's accuracy rating.

"The redistricting was done by the courts and it's not a conservative court. To blame the legislature, was someone disingenuous when you think all the court battles out there. The court pretty much did the Legislature's job but in the video, she blames the Legislature."

Ring said he interpreted Graham's video as a sign she is running, not just considering. "Everyone has a right to run, and to try to handicap races two years out is complete insanity."

Ring, who was on the team that built Yahoo, left the Internet start-up in 2001 and moved to Florida in 2001 to start a new company, Collegiate Images, with a friend. His net worth is $13.7 million.

He said that he will spend the next several months doing "what I need to do to be credible. I won't run if I'm not credible. I'm certainly exploring it but it is going to come down to after the presidential election if I think I can win.

"In 2016, it comes down to fundraising. I feel I have the best bio of anyone who could possibly run. I have the best message of anyone who could possibly run -- bring the innovation economy to Florida. Can I bring people to support me?"

Miami Herald reporters Amy Sherman and Kristen Clark contributed to this report.

[Last modified: Thursday, April 21, 2016 10:38am]


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