WUFT News

Florida Democratic Party chair not seeking re-election

By on November 16th, 2012

By Stephanie Denardo — WUFT-FM

After serving as the chair of the Florida Democratic Party for two years, Rod Smith is not seeking re-election when his term ends in January.

The committeeman for the Alachua County Democratic Party, Smith announced earlier this year that he planned to complete his term through the election cycle but would not run for re-election.

Smith is also well-known for his work as the state attorney for the Eighth Judicial Circuit when he prosecuted Gainesville serial killer Danny Rolling in 1992.

“I had only agreed that I would do this for the term of this election, which I had signed onto,” he said. “I’m actually completing a term that was started by someone else, and I only had agreed to complete that term from day one….And then when my son took ill, I announced — that was back in August — that I would not be seeking re-election.”

Smith’s son was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year, which has influenced his decision to not run for re-election.

“My focus is on my son getting well, and I have made that clear to everybody,” he said. “Until my son is well, I don’t have any other focus in terms of public life.”

The Florida Democratic Party State Executive Committee will hold a meeting in January to elect the new chair.

Hoping to fill Smith’s state position is Alan Clendenin, who currently serves on the Democratic National Committee and the Hillsborough County Democratic committee.

“I believe that he will re-brand the party better, that he will run campaigns better from a grassroots effort through local candidates,” Nicolas Janovsky, a coordinator for Clendenin’s campaign, said. ”And (he’ll) build a better bench talent and bring more financial resources to the party.”

Clendenin’s goal as chair will be to bring Democrats back to power in Tallahassee, Janovsky said.

“With our close governor loss in 2010, we have an opportunity to take back Tallahassee from the Republicans,” he said. “Alan Clendenin will be the best person to lead the financial efforts to retake Tallahassee for Democrats.”

Hana Engroff wrote this story online.


This entry was posted in Florida, Local, Politics and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Florida

The Ocala City Council repealed the so-called "saggy pants" ordinance at Ocala City Hall on Tuesday evening. The ordinance banned saggy pants on city property.

Ocala City Council Repeals ‘Saggy Pants’ Ordinance

The Ocala City Council voted to repeal an ordinance banning saggy pants on city property. The controversial ordinance met with criticism from the NAACP.


City of Hampton Kicks Off New Era with First Election In About a Decade

The city of Hampton holds its first election in about 10 years today after state lawmakers give local leaders a second chance instead of dissolving the city. Citizens will vote to fill city council seats and approve charter amendments.


Marty Washington, 57, of Gainesville, Florida walks by the City of Waldo Police Department on Wednesday, September 3. Waldo is under investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement after being accused of issuing illegal ticket quotas for officers.

Steve Maynard Named Waldo’s Interim Police Chief

The Alachua County Sherriff’s Office has named Acting Captain Steve Maynard as Waldo’s new interim police chief, after the previous chief was accused of enacting illegal ticket quotas.


National Report, a satirical website, published a story stating Williston had signed a deal to replace the local police department with a privatized force. According to the article, the new police force would be "trained, managed, and wholly operated by Walmart."

Spoof Website Turns Attention to Williston Police Department

National Report, a satirical news website, drew attention to the Williston Police Department after publishing an article about a deal made with Walmart to supply the town with a new, privatized police force. Williston PD pointed out the satirical nature of the story on Facebook.


Screen shot 2014-08-27 at 4.01.08 PM

Former Waldo Police Chief Accused of Unlawful Ticket Quota

Former Waldo Police Chief Mike Szabo and current Cpl. Kenneth Smith have been accused of misrepresentation, fraud and enforcing unlawful ticketing quotas among other allegations made by current Waldo police officers.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments