Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Emergency hearing set in dispute over House District 64 race

TALLAHASSEE — An emergency hearing has been scheduled for Monday in a case that could determine whether or not Rep. James Grant, R-Tampa, has an August primary.

The write-in candidate challenging Grant, Daniel Matthews, was kicked out of the race by a Leon County judge. Circuit Court Judge Angela Dempsey ruled Thursday that Matthews did not live in the district at the time of qualifying and therefore was ineligible to run for that office. As a result, she also ruled that the primary between Grant and fellow Republican Miriam Steinberg must be moved to November and opened to all voters in the district.

Matthews' attorney immediately filed an emergency motion to stay the judge's order, meaning the primary between Grant and Steinberg would remain as scheduled in August and closed to all but registered Republican voters. That hearing is set for Monday, and whatever is decided will affect how the Pinellas and Hillsborough supervisors of elections treat thousands of ballots that have already been printed.

Meanwhile, the First District Court of Appeal will decide whether it wants to take up the Matthews case, kick it back to the circuit court or pass it on to the state Supreme Court.

Steinberg's husband, Michael, filed the initial lawsuit against Matthews, saying he was not qualified to run as a write-in candidate. Michael Steinberg said the core question before the courts is whether a state law that requires a write-in candidate to live in the district at the time of qualifying is constitutional. Dempsey believed it is, and so did a Broward County judge who made a similar ruling in the case of a person running as a write-in candidate for the Broward County Commission.

But a different Leon County Circuit judge took the opposite stance. Judge George Reynolds ruled last week that write-in candidates are required to live in the district only upon election because that is the standard for all political candidates outlined in the state Constitution. He allowed a candidate for House District 96 in Broward County to remain in contention, effectively ensuring that the race between two Democrats is decided by registered Democrats only.

Emergency hearing set in dispute over House District 64 race 08/01/14 [Last modified: Friday, August 1, 2014 9:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Miami pollster Sergio Bendixen dies

    Blogs

    Sergio Bendixen, the first Hispanic to run a U.S. presidential campaign who later pioneered public-opinion polling among Latinos and other immigrant populations, died late Friday in Miami. He was 68.

    Sergio Bendixen.
  2. Why the Lightning would consider trading Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — This summer, the Lightning could trade one of its most dynamic young players ever.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) celebrates with his team on the bench after beating Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (33) to score his second goal of the period and to tie the score at 4 to 4 during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (03/27/17).
  3. Why the Lightning should keep Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    Keep him.

    Jonathan Drouin is live bait. The Lightning is ready to run the hook through him and cast him out there again. Drouin has enough talent for the Lightning to meet some defensive needs in a deal.

    Keep him.

    Lightning wing Jonathan Drouin celebrates after beating Los Angeles Kings goalie Peter Budaj during the first period of Tuesday's win in Tampa. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  4. Romano: When a life is more valuable than an arrest

    Public Safety

    Before examining the details, let's propose a question:

    This is a handout request to accompany school portraits of Joey Boylan, who died of a drug overdose and who is being written about in John Romano's column for Sunday. We'd like to run a mug of Joey with the column. Any of the first three attached pictures would be fine to use. We don't need them all. Just pick your favorite portrait and put that in the system. Thanks.
  5. Bono visits with former President George W. Bush

    Blogs

    A surprising photo showed up Friday on former President George W. Bush's Instagram feed. Apparently Bono made a visit to the ranch.

    Former President George W. Bush and Bono.