State ballot issues

State Supreme Court merit retention

Florida voters do not elect the seven justices who serve on the Florida Supreme Court. When an opening occurs, the governor selects a new justice from a list of suggested nominees. And later, Floridians get to vote, yes or no, on whether those justices should stay on the court. That's why the names of three justices will be on this November's ballot, statewide.

Know your candidates: Read more about the candidates in this race

R. Fred Lewis

Barbara Pariente

Peggy A. Quince

State Constitution Amendments

Know your candidates: Guide to the proposed constitutional amendments

These require 60 percent support to pass.

Amendment 1: Health care services

Amendment 2: Veterans Disabled Due to Combat Injury; Homestead Property Tax Discount

Amendment 3: State Government Revenue Limitation

Amendment 4: Property Tax Limitations; Property Value Decline; Reduction for Nonhomestead Assessment Increases

Amendment 5: State Courts

Amendment 6: Prohibition on Public Funding of Abortions; Construction of Abortion Rights

Amendment 8: Religious Freedom

Amendment 9: Homestead Property Tax Exemption for Surviving Spouse of Military Veteran or First Responder


Amendment 10: Tangible Personal Property Tax Exemption

Amendment 11: Additional Homestead Exemption; Low-Income Seniors Who Maintain Long-Term Residency on Property; Equal to Assesed Value

Amendment 12: Appointment of Student Body President to Board of Governors of the State University System

State Legislature

Twelve Florida House districts covering the Tampa Bay area are on the ballot, and voters will pick Senators in three senate districts.

All districts were re-drawn this year. See a map of the new Senate districts or new House districts.

Hernando County

Find out who won local races from the Hernando County Supervisor of Elections

State House District 34

Jimmie T. Smith scored an upset in 2010 when he beat Republican incumbent Ron Schultz for what was then the District 43 seat. To win a second term, Smith must fend off former state legislator Nancy Argenziano, a former Republican who is now running as an Independent. Argenziano garnered the support of the Democratic Party when the Democratic primary winner dropped out to set up a head-to-head matchup against Smith.

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State House District 35

This race pits a former Hernando County commissioner who is active in the community against an incumbent who has a sizable monetary advantage. Rose Rocco is running for state office for the first time while Robert Schenck is going for his last before he reaches term limits.

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Hillsborough County

Find out who won local races from the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections

State Senate District 24

Tom Lee, a former state Senate president seeking a return to the Legislature, handily defeated state Rep. Rachel Burgin in a bruising Republican primary. Now he faces Democrat Elizabeth Belcher, a first-time political candidate who says her No. 1 priority is state ethics reform. Also in the race is Randolph Link, a write-in candidate from Plant City.

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State Senate District 26

Former state Rep. Bill Galvano is running to return to Tallahassee in the newly drawn district against Paula House, a former leader of the Highlands County Democrats, attorney and active Everglades conservation advocate.

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State House District 57

Bruce Barnett and Jake Raburn face off in a new district in southeastern Hillsborough. Raburn has garnered several local endorsements, but Barnett is determined to bring Democratic representation to this historically Republican part of the county.

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State House District 58

A political novice from Brandon is taking on a former Plant City mayor to fill this newly created district. The choices: Jose N. Vazquez, a Democrat and political newcomer who vowed to quit the race after a dispute with Democratic leaders. So far, he hasn't followed through with that threat. He ran as a write-in candidate four years ago despite being incarcerated for a felony conviction. His opponent is Daniel D. Raulerson, a Republican Plant City commissioner and former mayor.

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State House District 59

This race pits lawyer against lawyer. Gail Gottlieb is licensed by the Maryland Bar Association and has spent 25 years in public policy and service positions. Ross Spano is a Florida lawyer with 14 years experience and his own law firm.

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State House District 62

Two Tampa natives with deep roots in the area are competing to represent this Democrat-leaning district. They are newcomer Wesley Warren and incumbent Janet Cruz.

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State House District 63

Incumbent Republican Shawn Harrison faces competition from Hillsborough middle school science teacher Mark Danish, a Democrat, in a redrawn district that leans Democratic. Harrison has out-fundraised Danish by nearly $200,000, and the pair's political stances are about as dissimilar as their campaign bank accounts.

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Pinellas County

Find out who won local races from the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections

Not on the ballot: Races decided by Aug. 14 primary or candidate has no opposition

State Senate District 20

Political newcomer Ashley Rhodes-Courter faces off against veteran lawmaker Jack Latvala in this newly drawn district. Rhodes-Courter, a former foster child, is an internationally known child welfare activist who hopes to educate policymakers and advocate for better laws. Latvala says his main focus will be fostering economic growth and creating jobs.

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State House District 65

For the third time in six years, Peter Nehr and Carl Zimmermann are vying to represent this northern Pinellas County district. Nehr, the three-term incumbent, again has a heavy fundraising advantage, but his previous two races against Zimmermann have been close.

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State House District 66

Larry Ahern, the District 51 incumbent, is moving into a district that became more Republican-leaning in redistricting. He faces newcomer Mary Louise Ambrose, who says she is seeking office in response to the rightward turn of the Legislature under Gov. Rick Scott. Ahern on his website pledges to cut wasteful spending and reduce regulations, while Ambrose promises to protect the middle class and to end tax breaks to wealthy individuals and corporations.

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State House District 67

Voters in District 67, encompassing much of Clearwater and Largo, will choose between incumbent Ed Hooper, who's seeking a fourth and final term in office; and challenger Ben Farrell, a manager at Lenny's Restaurant in Clearwater.

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State House District 68

In one of the state's most competitive races, Frank Farkas wants to help streamline government and get residents back to work. Dwight Dudley thinks he can do better for the community and for all Floridians. Matt Weidner, a 40-year-old attorney running as an independent, did not respond to questions.

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State House District 69

The District 69 House race offers voters a pair of confident candidates with divergent goals and backgrounds. Kathleen Peters has served on South Pasadena's City Commission since 2008. She is currently the mayor, a commission-appointed position. Josh Shulman lost a bid last year for St. Petersburg City Council. Peters entered the race with a bevy of high-profile endorsements and has raised substantially more money, but Shulman doesn't seem deterred. Since May, Shulman says, he has knocked on voters' doors every weekend but one. The Florida Democratic Party also recently released an aggressive TV ad promoting Shulman and attacking Peters.

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Pasco County

Find out who won local races from the Pasco County Supervisor of Elections

All state legislator races were decided in the primary.

Read about the races that have already been decided

Unopposed races

  • Rep. John Legg, R-Trinity, won the District 17 state Senate seat covering parts of Pasco and Hillsborough after he won a GOP primary and a Democratic opponent withdrew.
  • Egg farmer Wilton Simpson, R-Trilby, will appear on the ballot but is assured of victory. His Democratic opponent for Senate District 18 dropped out and the party failed to find a replacement.
  • Mike Fasano a former state senator running in House District 36, easily won his primary election in August and only face a blank line in this campaign.
  • Incoming House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, earned a fourth term in June when no one else filed to run in District 38.