Posts Tagged ‘Scott Arceneaux’

Search for next FDP executive director narrows

Sunday, March 12th, 2017

The choice to succeed Scott Arceneaux as executive director of the Florida Democratic Party is between Jonathan Ducote and Josh Wolf, sources tell FloridaPolitics.
Political consultant Jackie Lee and former state legislator Reggie Fullwood were also in the mix, but reportedly are now out of contention for the position.
Ducote has served as political director for the Florida Justice Association since 2014. He previously served as campaign manager for Loranne Ausley’s unsuccessful 2010 bid for CFO, as financial director for Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown’s 2011 election campaign victory, and as campaign manager for Barbara Buono’s unsuccessful challenge to Chris Christie in the 2013 New Jersey gubernatorial election.
Wolf most recently served as campaign manager for Patrick Murphy’s U.S. Senate bid. Prior to that, he served as campaign manger for Steve Grossman’s unsuccessful 2014 campaign for governor in Massachusetts.  In 2012, he managed U.S. Rep. Ami Bera’s successful campaign in California.
Arceneaux’s departure after more than seven years as executive director was announced in January, shortly after Coconut Grove developer and fundraiser Stephen Bittel was elected as chairman.  His tenure as executive director had been contentious in recent years, as some Democrats openly wondered why he had maintained his position while the state continued to lose statewide elections.
Arceneaux was initially hired during Karen Thurman’s tenure back in 2009. He lasted through the regimes of Rod Smith and Allison Tant.
2016 proved to be another desultory year for Florida Democrats. After being a blue state for two successive presidential elections, Republican Donald Trump eked out a narrow but clear cut victory over Hillary Clinton, while Marco Rubio easily defeated Murphy to maintain his seat in the Senate.
The post Search for next FDP executive director narrows appeared first on Florida Politics.

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Scott Arceneaux out as Florida Democrats’ chief

Tuesday, January 24th, 2017

The first shoe has fallen in newly-elected chairman Stephen Bittel‘s reorganization of the Florida Democratic Party with executive director Scott Arceneaux on his way out.
The party announced Tuesday that Arceneaux, who has served in that role through the tenures of  three previous state party chairs, is stepping down, though not immediately.
When Bittel won a resounding election Jan. 14, the tone that the Miami Beach developer established set the expectation that there would be a shakeup at the party, and he said he’d spend last week evaluating the staff.
Bittel also is bringing in some of his loyalists, with the announcement that Juan Penalosa of Mercury LLC and Reggie Cardozo and Tessa Bay, who both had key roles in the Hillary For America Florida campaign, are being hired into the office staff.
The transition may look more sweeping at this point than those of Bittel’s predecessors, Allison Tant, Rod Smith and Karen Thurman, but looks nothing like when Blaise Ingoglia took the chair of the Republican Party of Florida two years ago. Ingoglia locked out the staff from the office on his first day, and only few returned.
In this case, Bittel and Arceneaux exchanged best wishes, as the rest of the staff remains, awaiting any future changes.
In a release issued by the Florida Democrats, Bittel praised Arceneaux for setting fundraising records, professionalizing and expanding the staff and building “the strongest digital and communications program of any state party in the country.
What Arceneaux could not do was win many statewide elections despite having a voter-registration advantage, and that record led as much as anything to the assention of Bittel, a wealthy Democratic donor, to the chair.
“We wish him all the best,” Bittel said of Arceneaux.
“Our goal is to build the strongest statewide grassroots operation in FDP history, and I know Juan, Reggie and Tessa will help put us in the position to do just that.

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Allison Tant won’t return as Florida Democratic Party chair

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Florida Democratic Party Chair Allison Tant announced Friday she will not run for another term as party chair in January.
“It has truly been a privilege and an honor to serve as your chair and I wanted you to hear from me first that I’ve decided to not seek re-election in January,” Tant wrote in email to party members. “I will use the remainder of my term to ensure that the next chair is able to hit the ground running on Day 1 with as smooth of a transition as possible.”
The list of possible replacements starts with Alan Clendenin, the 57-year-old State and Democratic National Committeeman from Tampa who came close to becoming the party chair of the Florida Democratic Party in 2013, losing out by 80 votes out of over 1,000 cast to Tant. He currently is vice-chair of the FDP.
Clendenin did not immediately return a call for comment. He lost a bid for school board in Hillsborough County back in August.
Tant’s decision comes after a very poor night for Florida Democrats on Tuesday, where Hillary Clinton fell short to Donald Trump by a little more than one percentage point in the race for Florida’s 29 electoral votes for president. Democrats were also unsuccessful in retaking the U.S. Senate seat, with Patrick Murphy losing by eight percentage points to incumbent Marco Rubio.
And in state legislative races, the party actually LOST one seat in the state Senate, despite new Democratic-friendly political lines drawn up by the Legislature last year. That resulted after the Florida Supreme Court ruled they had been originally drawn up in violation of the state’s constitution. They now have 15 members in the 40-person body.
Democrats did pick up three seats in the House, and now will have 41 members to the Republicans’ 79.
Some state Democrats also want to know if Scott Arceneaux will stick around. Arceneaux has

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A rundown of the real winners and losers from Florida’s general election

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

Yesterday’s slate of general elections in Florida certainly provided a list of winners and losers, and I’m not just talking about the candidates. Here is my list of the real winners and losers coming out of Tuesday.
Winners
Rick Scott — The Naples Republican was an early backer of the president-elect, comparing Trump’s rise to his own 2010 gubernatorial run and even penning an op-ed way back in January that Trump captured “the frustration of many Americans.” No doubt he’s taking notes for his own rumored 2018 U.S. Senate bid.
Blaise Ingoglia — Republicans keep their majority in the Florida House and Senate. Rubio easily re-elected to a second term. And Florida helps send Trump to the White House. It’s a good time to be the head of the Republican Party of Florida.
Joe Gruters — The Sarasota GOP chairman stood by Trump through a series of controversies, and will go down as one of his most loyal supporters. Bonus: He cruised to victory in House District 73, crushing his Democratic opponent.
Brian Ballard — It took him three tries to find his winning horse, but what a bonanza is now in store for him. The president-elect of the United States of America is his client, for goodness’ sakes. The only question now is to which country does Ballard wish to serve as Ambassador.
Susie Wiles — Does she know how to pick them? Wiles was an early supporter of Trump, even taking over his Florida operations. Like Gruters, she’ll go down as one of his most loyal supporters.
Roger Stone — All in on Team Trump from Day One. He issued an ominous warning in early October about the WikiLeaks dump. Did he have inside info? Maybe. But his prediction of a Trump presidency was on point.
Steve Crisafulli — The outgoing House Speaker dedicated much of his time to helping Trump in Florida, raising money for the president-elect and helping bring Trump to the Space Coast for campaign rallies. Could

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In Florida, Donald Trump faces a Hillary Clinton campaign behemoth

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

For Donald Trump, the fight for Florida begins and ends with mass appeal: signature rallies and direct social media contact with voters who believe he can “make America great again.”
Add some 30 Florida Trump employees to about 80 Republican Party field workers deployed around the state, and that pretty much covers the GOP nominee’s conventional ground game operation in the largest battleground state.
Then there’s Hillary Clinton: 51 offices, with more on the way, and 500 employees combing Florida, and an overall ground game that rivals that of the previous Democratic nominee, President Barack Obama.
Trump loyalists say they have a deliberate strategy and far-reaching footprint to counter the Clinton behemoth, even if his apparatus doesn’t measure up in campaign offices, staff and paid advertising. But the organizational disparity leaves more than a few Republicans scratching their heads. All agree Trump has no path to the required 270 electoral votes without claiming Florida’s 29.
“Everyone keeps saying you’re not doing this in a traditional way, why?” says Trump adviser Karen Giorno. “Well, we don’t have a traditional candidate.” She oversaw Trump’s Florida operation from the primary season until last week, when she moved to national duties.
Giorno points to thousands of volunteers led by unpaid chairmen in each of Florida’s 67 counties. The Republican National Committee says it has 1,000 trained volunteers to go with its employees.
Yet only after Labor Day did the Trump campaign open outposts other than the nominee’s state headquarters in Sarasota. Giorno’s replacement by Susie Wiles came just two months before Election Day.
Giorno and Wiles say their candidate is in good shape. Either Trump or his running mate Mike Pence will be in the state at least weekly until the election, Giorno said. Between visits, she added, a volunteer network, led by people in each of Florida’s 67 counties, will

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