SUN SENTINEL: Nation, state need pols who aim for the middle

Sun Sentinel: Written by Randy Schultz. August 15, 2017.

Adam Putnam shows why Florida โ€“ like the rest of the nation โ€“ has at least three political parties.

Not so long ago, Putnam would have been the nearly uncontested Republican candidate for governor in 2018. As agriculture commissioner, heโ€™s held statewide office for eight years. Putnam previously served five terms in Congress, rising to a leadership position in the House. His political action committee has raised nearly $10 million.

Yet last week Putnam got a credible challenger from his own party. State Sen. Jack Latvala, R-St. Petersburg, will write that chamberโ€™s budget in the 2018 legislative session. That role allows him to raise lots of his own money. Itโ€™s been four decades since a state senator became governor โ€“ Bob Graham โ€“ but Latvala is one of Floridaโ€™s most accomplished politicians.

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