Martin County Sheriff Crowder weighs GOP primary challenge of Allen Westby George Bennett | February 13th, 2012
“It looks like at the present time all the interest in running for that seat is coming out of Broward County with people relocating. First, I found that strange because I think we’ve got some good people up here who would be capable of representing their neighbors,” Crowder said this morning.
Crowder, 66, has been elected sheriff five times in Martin County and has a history of ruffling feathers in his own party, including his 2010 endorsement of and TV ad for Democrat Alex Sink in the governor’s race against GOP nominee Rick Scott.
His interest in the congressional seat was first reported by Treasure Coast political columnist Eve Samples on Saturday.
West announced Jan. 31 that he would leave his Palm Beach-Broward district to run in the newly drawn district. Democrat Patrick Murphy of Fort Lauderdale has also announced he’s following West to run for the seat. U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta, lives in the district, but is running for a newly drawn seat to the west that includes many of his current constituents.
The Florida legislature approved the new districts last week. The map is already the subject of legal challenges.
“I have no particular personal qualms with Allen West. I kind of admire the guy for his military service,” Crowder said. “But I think it’s a problem up here for some people that we couldn’t field our own candidate.”
Crowder didn’t identify any specific areas of disagreement with West or the Republican-controlled House, saying “I agree with most things that the Republican Party supports, but I think there are times when we have to find compromise.”
Crowder said he hopes to announce a decision soon, possibly even this week.
Tags: Robert Crowder