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What are the Residency Requirements for State and Federal Candidates in Florida?

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A view of the historic Old Florida State Capitol building, which sits in front of the current New Capitol, on November 10, 2018 in Tallahassee, Florida. (Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) – “Do you even live in the district?” This question typically flies at a political candidate during a campaign in an effort to invalidate him or her if the candidate’s address isn’t already in the district. Candidates have used this question for disinformation campaigns against their political opponents. Or if the candidate doesn’t make the attack, voters in the candidate’s base do. In some cases, voters supporting a candidate with this line of thinking are actually sincere–but they happen to be sincerely wrong and spread the disinformation to other voters. The truth is, whether a state or federal candidate lives in the district he or she is running for at the start of or during the campaign doesn’t affect their election qualification or their chance of winning.

Given the amount of documents required to run for public office (and properly qualify by the respective deadline), there is plenty of opportunity for errors, and all it takes is one single clerical error to disqualify a candidate. This happened most recently to Scotty Moore, Republican candidate for Congressional District 9. He filed early and would’ve vied for the chance to defeat incumbent Democratic Congressman Darren Soto in November, but Moore erroneously completed a State office oath instead of a federal one when he filed to run.

 

Does a Candidate Have to Live Within the District to Run for That Office?

For state and federal elections, the short answer is no. According to the Florida Division of Elections, federal candidates (U.S. House and Senate) don’t need to live in their respective district, only in the state. The same is true for Florida governor, lieutenant governor and the governor’s cabinet. State House, State Senate and judicial candidates are required to be a resident of the district upon taking office.

In other words, while a state candidate is running for that seat, he or she can in fact have an address outside of the target district. The important thing is that he or she makes sure to secure an address before their primary date (if theirs turns out to be a primary election-only scenario), or before the general election date, because in the event the candidate wins said election, that is the moment in which he or she “takes office.” Therefore, their address would need to have already been updated to somewhere within the target district by the applicable election day.

The time frame for living in the larger overall residency in question–be it U.S. citizenship for president, vice president, or U.S. House and Senate; or Florida state residency for governor, lieutenant governor, or Florida House and Senate–changes depending on the office being sought.

For local office (city and county), it’s important to reference the respective county’s Supervisor of Elections or city/town government website, since local jurisdictions have different requirements. For example, here’s what the Orange County Supervisor of Elections lists for its candidates.

 

Residency Requirements

According to the Florida Division of Elections website, here are the residency requirements:

  • President of the United States: a natural born citizen and resident of the U.S. for the last 14 years.
  • United States Senator: a citizen of the U.S. for at least 9 years and resident of the state when elected.
  • United States Representative in Congress: a citizen of the U.S. for at least 7 years and resident of the state when elected.
  • Governor and Lieutenant Governor: an elector and resident of the state for the preceding 7 years.
  • Cabinet Members: an elector and resident of the state for the preceding 7 years.
  • State Senator: an elector and resident of the district upon taking office and a resident of the state for at least 2 years prior to election.
  • State Representative: an elector and resident of the district upon taking office and a resident of the state for at least 2 years prior to election.
  • State Attorney: an elector and resident of the circuit upon taking office.
  • Public Defender: an elector and resident of the circuit upon taking office.
  • Justice of the Supreme Court: an elector and resident of the state upon taking office.
  • Judge, District Court of Appeal: an elector and resident of the territorial jurisdiction of the court upon taking office.
  • Circuit Judge: an elector and resident of the territorial jurisdiction of the court upon taking office.

 

Why Knowing Florida Election Law Matters

It helps for voters and candidates alike to be informed of what Florida election law says about candidate residencies. On the local level, it helps to know where to look. Law enforcement will tell anyone “ignorance of the law is no excuse,” and the same is true for elections. The more voters know, the better informed they are, and the better informed they are, the more mature political campaigns and elections can be, instead of the emotional parroting that’s become prevalent in state and federal elections over the past decade. The political landscape has just gotten a blank canvas with the recently redrawn districts. It’s important now more than ever before for voters to have factual, solid knowledge of the political process and the candidates on their ballots.

The Florida primary election happens August 23, 2022. The general election follows on November 8, 2022.

____________________________________________

Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News. | mellissa.thomas@floridanationalnews.com

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Politics

Governor Ron DeSantis Advocates for a Constitutional Amendment for Congressional Term Limits

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis was invited by the U.S. Term Limits organization to travel to meet with legislative leaders to encourage the passage of state resolutions calling for term limits on members of Congress. Florida passed House Concurrent Resolution (HCR) 693 calling for a U.S. Term Limits convention during the 2024 Legislative Session. Florida is among a group of six states that have passed resolutions through both chambers of state legislature to make such an application for a convention.
Video courtesy of the Executive Office of the Governor. To watch the video, click here.

“We need term limits for members of Congress. Florida has already certified a proposed amendment under Article V of the Constitution and other states are poised to follow suit,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “At the invitation of the U.S. Term Limits organization, I traveled today to encourage other state legislators to follow Florida’s lead and pass a resolution to call for a constitutional amendment for congressional term limits. We will never turn our country around if we don’t change the incentives in DC. Term limits are supported by huge majorities of Americans—it’s time to make it happen.”

The U.S. Constitution provides state legislatures with the authority to propose amendments without the approval of Congress. To call the U.S. Term Limits Convention, it would require two-thirds of the 50 states to pass similar resolutions. Currently, Florida, Alabama, Missouri, West Virginia, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin have passed resolutions calling for a U.S. Term Limits Convention, though other states have such a resolution passed in a single chamber or before their legislative bodies for a vote.

 

The Governor’s efforts to work with other states to call for U.S. term limits is an important function of the role of states in demanding accountability from Washington, D.C. Today’s advocacy builds upon his announcement last month calling for other constitutional reforms and the successful passage of HCR 693.

 

 

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Politics

Vice President Kamala Harris remarks at Independent Enterprises Construction Site Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Vice President Kamala Harris: Just — these incredibly highly skilled folks are doing the work that is about removing lead pipes, which for too long in our country have existed, especially in communities that just couldn’t afford on their own to pay to get rid of those lead pipes.

And lead pipes produce toxic water. And when children drink toxic water through lead pipes, it has an impact on their learning ability, on their health. And for too long, this has been the case, that communities have been crying out for support to get rid of these lead pipes.

And proud — I am proud to say that the President and I have finally made a commitment — and we’re seeing it through — to get rid of all lead pipes in America.

And so, this is one of the projects that is taking place because of our infrastructure work. And it’s about good-paying jobs — union jobs. The — the folks who are running this operation hired over 100 people just to do this work.

But it’s about the families that live here and — and deserve to — to be heard and deserve to get the attention they’re now receiving because of our work.

So, thank you all.

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Politics

President Trump Receives Endorsements from 15 Current and Former South Carolina Sheriffs

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President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference on the North Portico of the White House, Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

North Charleston, SC Today, President Donald J. Trump announced that 15 current and former South Carolina sheriffs are endorsing his campaign for the presidency. In total, President Trump has received 182 endorsements from South Carolina’s staunchest conservative leaders, along with more than 250 Grassroots Leaders who announced their support last June.

 

“After three years and millions of illegal aliens and countless deadly drugs smuggled into the United States, South Carolinians need a strong and steady Commander in Chief,” said Spartanburg County Sheriff Chuck Wright. “As the only Law and Order candidate running for president, President Trump has the unique experience and bold leadership to protect our families and communities. He secured our border once before, and he will do it once again.”

 

“We saw brazen lawlessness erupt right here in Charleston in 2020, and security at home requires fearless leaders like President Trump, not weak-kneed politicians like Nikki Haley who kowtows to her globalist Democrat donors,” said former Charleston County Sheriff Al Cannon. “President Trump is headed for a historic win in South Carolina, and it’s time for Nikki Haley to step aside and unite behind the only candidate who will defeat Joe Biden and restore our nation in November.”

 

Sheriffs Endorsements:

Sheriff Rick Clark, Pickens County

Sheriff D. Max Dorsey, II Chester County

Sheriff Lee Boan, Kershaw County

Sheriff TJ Joye, Florence County

Sheriff Duane Lewis, Berkeley County

Sheriff Hobart Lewis, Greenville County

Sheriff Chad McBride, Anderson County

Sheriff Don Reynolds, Laurens County

Sheriff Josh Price, Saluda County

Sheriff Jody Rowland, Edgefield County

Sheriff Clark Stearns, McCormick County

Sheriff Kevin Tolson, York County

Sheriff Carter Weaver, Georgetown County

Sheriff Chuck Wright, Spartanburg County

Former Sheriff Al Cannon, Charleston County

 

 

President Trump’s South Carolina Leadership Team:

Governor Henry McMaster

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham

U.S. Senator Tim Scott

Lt. Governor Pamela Evette

Attorney General Alan Wilson

Treasurer Curtis Loftis

Secretary of State Mark Hammond

Hugh Weathers, Commissioner of Agriculture

U.S. Representative Joe Wilson (SC-02)

U.S. Representative Jeff Duncan (SC-03)

U.S. Representative William Timmons (SC-04)

U.S. Representative Nancy Mace (SC-01)

U.S. Representative Russell Fry (SC-07)

State Senator Ronnie Cromer, Chairman, Banking and Insurance Committee

State Senator Danny Verdin, Chairman, Medical Affairs Committee

State Senator Brian Adams

State Senator Billy Garrett

State Senator Penry Gustafson

State Senator Josh Kimbrell, former State Chair, Ron DeSantis

State Senator Rex Rice

State Representative Murrell Smith, Jr., Speaker of the House

State Representative Davey Hiott, Majority Leader

State Representative Bruce Bannister, Chairman, Ways and Means Committee

State Representative Sylleste Davis, Chairman, Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs Committee

State Representative Shannon Erickson, Chairman, House Education and Public Works Committee

State Representative Jeff Johnson, Chairman, House Legislative Oversight Committee

State Representative Jay Jordan, Jr., Chairman, House Ethics Committee

State Representative Patrick Haddon, Chairman, House Operations and Management Committee

State Representative Bill Hixon, Chairman, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs Committee

State Representative Weston Newton, Chairman, House Judiciary Committee

State Representative Bill Sandifer III, Chairman, Labor, Commerce and Industry Committee

State Representative William Bailey

State Representative Thomas Beach

State Representative Gary Brewer

State Representative Case Brittain

State Representative Mike Burns

State Representative Bill Chumley

State Representative Bobby Cox

State Representative Brandon Cox

State Representative Heather Ammons Crawford

State Representative Don Chapman

State Representative Jason Elliott

State Representative Cal Forrest, Jr.

State Representative Daniel Gibson

State Representative Doug Gilliam

State Representative Val Guest, Jr.

State Representative Brandon Guffey

State Representative Rob Harris

State Representative Bill Hager

State Representative Kevin Hardee

State Representative Bill Herbkersman

State Representative Lee Hewitt

State Representative Stewart Jones

State Representative Jay Kilmartin

State Representative Steven Long

State Representative Brian Lawson

State Representative Matt Leber, former State Chair, Vivek Ramaswamy

State Representative Randy Ligon

State Representative Phillip Lowe

State Representative RJ May

State Representative Ryan McCabe

State Representative John McCravy

State Representative Tim McGinnis

State Representative Cody Mitchell

State Representative Travis Moore

State Representative Adam Morgan

State Representative Alan Morgan

State Representative Chris Murphy

State Representative Brandon Newton

State Representative David O’Neal

State Representative Jordan Pace

State Representative Fawn Pedalino

State Representative Roger Nutt

State Representative Melissa Lackey Oremus

State Representative Robby Robbins

State Representative Mark Smith

State Representative Bill Taylor

State Representative David Vaughan

State Representative Jay West

State Representative Bill Whitmire

Sheriff Rick Clark, Pickens County

Sheriff D. Max Dorsey, II

Sheriff Lee Boan, Kershaw County

Sheriff TJ Joye, Florence County

Sheriff Duane Lewis, Berkeley County

Sheriff Hobart Lewis, Greenville County

Sheriff Chad McBride, Anderson County

Sheriff Don Reynolds, Laurens County

Sheriff Josh Price, Saluda County

Sheriff Jody Rowland, Edgefield County

Sheriff Clark Stearns, McCormick County

Sheriff Kevin Tolson, York County

Sheriff Carter Weaver, Georgetown County

Sheriff Chuck Wright, Spartanburg County

Treasurer Sheila Carpenter, Cherokee County

Treasurer Jim Eckstrom, Lexington County

Treasurer Jason Goings, Aiken County

Treasurer Randy Roberts, Kershaw County

Treasurer Mike Skinner, Jasper County

Auditor Charles Barton, Aiken County

Auditor Angie Suggs, Darlington County

Auditor Ryan Thomas, Cherokee County

Coroner Paul Brouthers, Dorchester County

Court Clerk Scott Suggs, Darlington County

Shanda Allen, Horry County School Board, District 11

Amanda Brett, Greenville County School Board, Area 26

Gene Lipsey, Chairman, Union County School Board

Sherri Taunton, Spartanburg County School Board, District 5

Councilman Tom Audette, York County

Councilman Benton Blount, Greenville County

Councilman Danny Bright, Union County

Councilwoman Beth Carigg, Chairwoman, Lexington County

Councilman Cam Crawford, Horry County

Councilman Danny Feagin, Aiken County

Councilman Tommy Ford, Union County

Chairman Johnny Gardner, Horry County

Councilman Sandy Haskell, Aiken County

Councilman Justin McCorkle, Spartanburg County

Councilman Kelley Mobley, Aiken County

Councilman Verd Odom, Marlboro County

Councilman Luke Rankin, Laurens County

Councilwoman Erin Mosley, Chester County

Councilman Thomas Reitz, Beaufort County

Councilman Alex Saitta, Pickens County

Councilman William Schofield, Florence County

Councilman Steven Shaw, Greenville County

Councilman Andrew Siders, Vice Chairman, Aiken County

Councilman David Sinclair, Vice Chairman,

Councilwoman Annie Smith, Union County

Councilman Stan Tzouvelekas, Greenville County

Councilman Pete Wilson, Chester County

Robert Harte, Aiken County Court Clerk

Mayor Curtis Boyd, Darlington

Mayor Rockey Burgess, Williamston

Mayor Christopher Burton, Honea Path

Mayor Jason Evans, Pageland

Mayor Chris Gray, Tega Cay

Mayor Todd Harrelson, Loris

Mayor Juston Ricard, Springdale

Mayor Jason Shamis, Campobello

Mayor Jarred Spencer, Cowpens

Mayor Kimberly Williams, New Ellenton

Councilman Donnie Adams, Lockhart

Councilman Greg Addison, Union

Councilman Al Allen, Myrtle Beach

Councilman Preston Bennett, Jonesville

Councilman Bryan Braddock, Florence

Councilman Lee Cole, Williamston

Councilwoman Jackie Hatley, Myrtle Beach

Councilman Michael Kellems, Aiken

Councilman Mark McFalls, Lockhart

Councilman Chad O’Rear, Simpsonville

Councilman Kevin Reeley, Springdale

Councilman Jarrett Taylor, Latta

Maj. Gen. James E. Livingston, USMC Ret.

The Honorable Ed McMullen, Former U.S. Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein

Former Lt. Governor André Bauer

Former Secretary of State Jim Miles

Former Adjutant General Bob Livingston

Former US Attorney Peter McCoy

Former State Senator Jake Knotts

Former State Senator Mike Rose

Former State Representative and House Education Committee Chair Rita Allison

Former State Representative Katie Arrington

Former State Representative Bruce Bryant

Former State Representative Chip Limehouse

Former State Representative Becky Meacham-Richardson

Former State Representative Mike Ryhal

Former State Representative Gary Smith

Former Sheriff Al Cannon, Charleston County

Former Councilman John Carigg, Lexington County

Former Councilman Roger Wade, Union County

Former School Board Member W.A. Buck Peay, Union County

Former Chairman Ken Richardson, Horry County School Board

Former Mayor Mark McBride, Myrtle Beach

Former Councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Jimmy Davis, Pickens

Former Councilman Michael Drake, Surfside Beach

Former Councilman Harry Griffin, Charleston

Former Councilman Dan Harvell, Honea Path

Former Councilwoman Cynthia Keating, Surfside Beach

Former Mayor William “Bo” McMillan, Mullins

Former Councilman Randall Wallace, Myrtle Beach

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