In what could be the least surprising news of the month, JAX Chamber President and CEO Daniel Davis has announced he will run for mayor of Jacksonville.
Davis has been a City Council member and a member of the Florida House, so he certainly knows the ropes. Davis, 49, has been the head of the Chamber since 2013. He’s also the past president of the Northeast Florida Builders Association.
He will be the most experienced and maybe the most well-funded candidate in the race. His entry had been anticipated for months.
His entry brings the total to four Republicans seeking replace term-limited GOP Mayor Lenny Curry. Also, a few Democrats.
The other Republicans are City Council members LeAnna Cumber and Al Ferraro, and Frank Keasler Jr.
The election is in March 2023.
Democrats in the race are perennial candidate Donna Deegan, who is a former First Coast News news reader, term-limited State Sen. Audrey Gibson and Theresa Ann Richardson. They may appeal to left-wing extremists.
According to the Daily Record, Davis said:
“I’ll take on the tough challenges and seize our biggest opportunities, because the hardworking people of Jacksonville deserve the same chance I had to succeed in this great city.
“The ultimate crime fighter is a world class education, the dignity of a job and access to opportunity for everyone.”
The words sound fine but conservatives are going to want more assurance from Davis that he will represent the average citizen and not Big Business interests alone.
He also could enhance his chances by promising to tear down Curry’s Iron Curtain controlling information coming out of City Hall.
Whoever leads that effort is going to be very popular with voters hungry for timely and accurate information.
Davis and the others with an R after their names also need to prepare for the fervid attention they will get from the media, which currently is preoccupied trying to fend off a Republican wave in the November midterms. Before spring they will have a long winter of discontent over the possibility that Republicans might retain City Hall.