Sen. Jim Norman Withdraws from Senate Contest
Sen. Jim Norman, R-Tampa, is now listed as "Withdrew" from the Florida Senate District 17 race.
Norman, a former Hillsborough County commissioner elected to the Senate in 2010, was rumored to be facing pressure not to complete the qualifying process before turning in all the paperwork last week.
However, on Tuesday, with speculation again growing that Norman would bow out to avoid an expensive primary battle against House Speaker Pro Tempore John Legg, R-Port Richey, the state Division of Elections website has updated Norman’s status.
House Speaker-designate Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, on Monday joined a growing list of party leaders to throw their support behind Legg.
Norman has yet to make a statement regarding the change in status.
Norman -- who has drawn fire on ethical issues and was among the Senate Republicans breaking ranks against prison privatization in the recent legislative session -- survived a brutal primary battle with fellow Republican Kevin Ambler in 2010.
John Korsak, who is one of two other Republican challengers to Legg for the seat, has been quick to criticize the appearance of backroom dealings.
“Over the past several days it has become clear that Tallahassee, acting against tradition, has inserted its power into a primary election to craft its desired outcome,” Korsak stated in a release.