MANATEE — State House Speaker Pro Tempore Ron Reagan, R-Bradenton, confirmed Wednesday that he will not run for the state Senate when his current term expires.
Reagan cited a compelling reason for passing up the opportunity to run for the Florida Legislature’s upper chamber: his friendship with an already-announced candidate, state Rep. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton.
“I wish Bill the best, he’s a good friend of mine,” said Reagan when asked about his plans for future office. “He’ll do a great job as our state senator.”
Reagan also confirmed he is among the hosts of an upcoming benefit for Galvano.
Asked if there are any other possible political jobs he covets, Reagan said he is keeping his options open.
“I don’t have anything planned at this point in time,” he said.
Galvano, who is also among the House’s top leaders, announced in June that he would run in 2012 for the state Senate seat now held by Sen. Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton.
Bennett represents District 21, which covers most of Manatee and parts of Sarasota, DeSoto, Charlotte and Lee counties.
Bennett, whose term is also expiring, said Wednesday he and Reagan are both hosts at a benefit in Galvano’s honor slated for tonight at Dolphin Aviation Inc., 8191 N. Tamiami Trail, at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport.
“I think the fact Ron is on the fundraiser kind of speaks volumes,” Bennett said.
Galvano said he was “extremely pleased” to have the support of his two Republican colleagues.
Galvano said of Reagan: “He has been an outstanding member of the Florida House, and would have been a good senator.”
Sara Kennedy, Herald reporter, can be reached at (941) 745-7031.