The Pinellas County Young Republicans will host a debate between the three candidates seeking the Republican nomination to replace Congressman Bill Young for District 13. The debate will be held at the Pinellas Park Auditorium on Thursday, January 2 at 7690 59 Street North. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. for the 6 p.m. debate which is open to the public.
Sun Beam Times founder Dr. David McKalip will serve as a panelist as will the founder of Saint Petersblog Peter Schorsch. The three candidates appear to represent the entire range of the Republican political spectrum. Kathleen Peters has been put forward by progressive Republican power player Jack Latvala. She has indicated she is not in favor of repealing Obamacare unless a better plan is available, but has not offered a better plan. David Jolly, is a more classic mainstream Republican and former legal counsel to Congressman Bill Young as well as a high powered lobbyist in D.C. He is favored by Young’s widow, Beverly and has called for the outright repeal of Obamacare now. General Mark Bircher is a former Top Gun Navy flier and a political newcomer. He frequently refers to the need of Americans to return to the Constitutional basis of governance. He has the endorsement of former Congressman Allen West and calls for the repeal of Obamacare.
The event will be only the second debate between the candidates who will face the voters on January 14th. After that, they will face a well-funded and highly organized campaign to elect the hard core Obama progressive Alex Sink who has moved into the district solely to run for office. A December 3rd poll by St. Pete Polls had Jolly at 28%, Peters at 27% and Bircher at 17% with 28% unsure. The same poll has Alex Sink leading all three theoretical candidates and the Libertarian Lucas Overby in a county that has swung hard to the left over the last decade. The special between all party candidates is March 11.