By Jacob Engels
On Friday night, our sources confirmed that Sean Ashby dropped off his paperwork to face Jennifer Thompson for a seat on the Orange County Commission in District 4 at the Orange County Supervisor of Elections office late Friday afternoon before closing. The Orange County Supervisor of Elections office updated the list of filed candidates on their website Monday morning and Ashby’s name was in fact on that list.
Ashby, an educator at Timber Creek High School, went up against Republican incumbent Tom Goodson in State House District 50 in 2012. Goodson, who spent $250,000 to Ashby’s $16,000 and benefited from a late ad buy courtesy of the Republican Party of Florida, only managed to best Ashby by 4,587 votes out of a total 71,311 cast.
Ashby won Orange County with 53% and garnered a total of 20,527 votes.
Since his loss, Ashby has maintained a relatively low profile. However, on February 1st, he filed an official complaint with State Attorney Jeff Ashton requesting an investigation into “textgate.” MORE ON THAT HERE
State Attorney Jeff Ashton’s office is currently working with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the matter. A civil suit is also pending.
Thompson, who was elected in 2010, is at the forefront of that investigation for having texted with a Walt Disney lobbyist surrounding a vote on earned sick time last year. Disney opposed the measure and Thompson ultimately voted against it. She has confirmed that she deleted the texts between her and the lobbyist and deemed the text messages “girltalk.”
SIDE NOTE –
“State law says that officials who intentionally destroy public records face a first-degree misdemeanor, with up to $1,000 in fines, a jail term of up to a year and possible removal from office, said First Amendment Foundation President Barbara Petersen. If it’s unintentional, officials can still face a non-criminal civil fine of up to $500, she said.”
Both Ashby and Thompson are relentless campaigners, so this race will be extremely fun to watch unfold. Can you believe election season is already on its way?
Ashby, who was walking around Absolutely Avalon this weekend, gave us a preview of the campaign to come during an on camera interview —
Jacob Engels, is the Founder of East Orlando Post. Along with the Post, he owns several other businesses and is currently enrolled at Valencia College. Jacob has lived in Avalon Park since it’s founding and enjoys playing with his black Labradoodle Jasper, listening to indie rock, and seeking out new business ventures. He can be reached at email@example.com