Florida Senate District-1 Race: Mike Hill
In the second part of our look at the Republican race in Florida Senate District-1, we look at the other state representative seeking to change chambers.
As with challenger Doug Broxson, the 58-year-old Hill saw an opening when Congressman Jeff Miller announced plans to retire, and current State Senator Greg Evers decided to run for Miller’s seat.
“We have a very conservative House in the Florida Legislature; over on the Senate side, maybe not as conservative,” Hill says. Oftentimes the House will pass what I call very good legislation. Then we send it over to the Senate, and it will either get watered down or killed altogether.”
If he gets to the state Senate, Hill’s top priority is job creation. He points to Florida becoming the third most populous state, behind California and Texas, and what he calls the nation’s “destination state.”
“So we must continue with creating an environment for job creation,” Hill says. “Lowering taxes to attract businesses here, and businesses that are currently here, that they’re able to expand and grow.”
Hill also wants to do away with what he calls “unnecessary regulations” in business. One example he cites is Florida’s Commercial Rental Lease Tax, the only such levy in the nation.
“It’s at 6% right now, so cut it 2% every year or so until we get it down,” says Hill. “That would make us a lot more attractive to businesses wanting to come to Florida.”
One area in which Hill is playing catch-up is in campaign funds. The latest disclosure forms show him with about $122,000, and a $50,000 loan to himself, compared to Broxson’s $304,000. Hill concedes that is cause for concern, but is quick to add that there’s enough in the bank to get out their message. Part of that message is a TV ad, in which Hill claims that Doug Broxson’s voting record does not reflect a conservative stance.
“This is a political atmosphere that we’re in,” Hill says. “You want to be victorious in your campaign [but] you don’t want to go negative in the sense that you would make up things that you would lie about the other candidate. Pointing out someone’s voting record, I think, is fair game.”
Mike Hill is also collecting his share of endorsements, including the Florida Medical Association’s Political Action Committee, Associated Builders and Contractors; and Associated Industries of Florida.
Two write-in candidates round out the August 30 primary ballot for state Senate District-1: Matthew Erskine of Milton and Miriam Woods of Pensacola.