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Blaise Ingoglia stepping down as Florida GOP Chairman

Ingoglia led the state party as its influence waned
OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times 
Republican Party of Florida Chairman Blaise Ingoglia gives the opening speech at the Sunshine Summit held at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel in Orlando, Florida on Friday, November 13, 2015. Republican Presidential candidates give their campaign speeches at the Republican Party of Florida's Sunshine Summit.
OCTAVIO JONES | Times Republican Party of Florida Chairman Blaise Ingoglia gives the opening speech at the Sunshine Summit held at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel in Orlando, Florida on Friday, November 13, 2015. Republican Presidential candidates give their campaign speeches at the Republican Party of Florida's Sunshine Summit.
Published Dec. 4, 2018|Updated Dec. 5, 2018

Four years after he was elected Florida GOP chairman against the wishes of Gov. Rick Scott, State Rep. Blaise Ingoglia is stepping down in January.

"Many people dream of going out on top, and with the unprecedented and undeniable success the Republican Party of Florida has had over the past four years, this is my opportunity. We won back-to-back Super Bowls when the 'chattering class and pundits' were picking us last in our division," the Spring Hill Republican said in a statement.

While he can celebrate President Trump's Florida win in 2016 and Ron DeSantis's and Scott wins this year,  Ingoglia was the weakest Florida Republican chairman in modern history.

Not only did independent political committee usurp much of the financial importance of the state GOP, but Gov. Scott shunned the party to concentrate on his own committee after the election of Ingoglia in 2015 over his preferred candidate.

"As a big proponent of term limits for RPOF members, it's time for me to step aside to allow fresh ideas and new energy to lead the committee into another crucial election," Ingoglia said.

Among the prospective successors to Ingoglia: Palm Beach GOP chairman Mike Barnett; Escambia state committeeman Jeremy Evans; National Committeeman Peter Feaman; Lobbyist and  Leon County GOP Chairman Evan Power; Sarasota state committeeman Christian Ziegler.

Only county chairs and state committeemen and state committeewomen are  eligible to be state chairman, so other prospects could emerge as county parties elect their officers in coming weeks.

A new chairman will be elected Jan. 12 in Orlando.

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