The District 21 state house race in Florida offers Republican incumbent Keith Perry and Democratic newcomer Andrew Morey. Both candidates have a Florida background and based their careers outside politics in Alachua County.
Perry was born in North Florida. Morey grew up on the other side of the state, in South Florida.
Both candidates had very different reasons for getting into politics. Morey disagreed with the way Perry has been running things and decided to try and make a change himself.
“In 2010, I wasn’t thrilled that our citizens had just elected a Republican Tea Party candidate to represent me,” Morey said. “I followed what was happening in Tallahassee, and after his 2011 vote to cut public education — the largest cut in Florida public education history — I was very concerned.”
Perry decided to become a politician when he became concerned about the nation’s youth, specifically his two daughters and their futures.
“I really looked at their options,” Perry said. “When they graduated, when they went into the job market, what were the opportunities for them? Thank goodness they got their mother’s genes — they’re a lot smarter than I am… I said, ‘what kind of a world are we going to have?'”
An issue where the candidates really differ is health care. Perry says he thinks the current medicare/medicaid plan is a waste of the taxpayers money, while Morey disagrees and supports the Obama health care changes. He says he believes the district would actually save money by increasing federal funding.
Both candidates agree there needs to be a change in the way water is managed in the state.
They disagree on what needs to be done. Morey thinks more money needs to be invested and that expert opinions are the key to a solution, while Perry wants to see changes made in how Alachua County is represented on the governing boards of the river water management districts.