Miller Resigns State House Seat

Politics

BY JACOB OGLES SRQ DAILY FRIDAY WEEKEND EDITION FRIDAY AUG 25, 2017

The Gulf Coast’s political world scrambled on Monday, following news that state Rep. Alex Miller, R-Sarasota, was resigning her seat, citing business and family needs. Leaders in Tallahassee say the move came as a surprise. Gov. Rick Scott will call a special election to fill Miller’s seat.

During her time in the House, Miller sided with House Speaker Richard Corcoran against the governor on such major fights as funding business incentives, but also was a rare Republican in the House favoring Medicaid expansion. She just won the District 72 seat in November over Democrat Ed James III by a margin of 58.1 percent to 41.9 percent. Miller is also CEO for Mercedes Medical.

I'm very sad to see her go,” says Corcoran. “I believe Alex is a tremendous talent and will be successful in whatever she does. I absolutely trust her decision and wish her all the best and will always be thankful for her service.”

Joe Gruters, chairman of the Republican Party of Sarasota, served in the Legislature with Miller this year and considered her a “rock star.” But he said the job proved consuming to many political newcomers. “Politics is not an easy game,” he says. “It’s a difficult process. For someone as successful as Alex, I can see how she grew somewhat frustrated.”

Immediately upon the news, Republican James Buchanan announced he would now pursue the Sarasota-based seat in a special election rather than run in Bradenton-centered District 72. He likely won’t be the only entry, and the names of prominent Democrats and Republicans immediately floated around political circles.

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