Good dominates in House 72 Democratic Primary

She will face Republican James Buchanan and Libertarian Alison Foxall in February 2018

Margaret Good. Image from the Matthews Eastmoore website

Sarasota attorney Margaret Good prevailed in the Dec. 5 Democratic primary for the State House 72 Special Election, winning with 72.4% of the vote, the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Office reported.

Sarasota business owner Ruta Jouniari had 2,342 votes to Good’s 6,144, the results showed.

The 8,494 votes cast represented 21.18% of the 40,104 registered Democratic voters in the district, the Supervisor of Elections Office reported. Of those who participated in the special primary, 898 cast ballots during early voting, Supervisor of Elections Office statistics show. Another 5,136 people voted by mail.

Good is an associate with the law firm of Matthews Eastmoore. Jouniari is president and owner of International Staffing Group.

Good will vie against Republican James Buchanan and Libertarian Alison Foxall in the special election, which is set for Feb. 13, 2018.

Buchanan notes on his campaign website that he has been a “local real estate agent since 2006, as well as a broker and small business owner since 2009.”

Foxall works with Gobble Logic LLC in Tampa; her campaign website says she is the owner of a small business that handles marketing and design work.

On her campaign Facebook page, Good wrote in a Dec. 6 post, “It’s clear that voters in House District 72 are ready to send a Democrat to Tallahassee to fight for fully funded public education, robust protection of our environment, and building an economy that works for all of us. We have 69 days left until the General Election against James Buchanan. Let’s do this!”

The Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections website shows the results of the primary. Image courtesy Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections

Financial filings

The most recent campaign finance reports in the race — filed by Nov. 30 — show Good had raised a total of $120,483.50 in cash and $2,572.89 in-kind contributions. She had spent $69,312.84, her report says.

Among her contributors were Christine Jennings, past chair of the Sarasota County Democratic Party ($250); Sarasota City Commissioners Liz Alpert ($250), Jen Ahearn-Koch ($50) and Hagen Brody ($100); Sarasota County School Board member Shirley Brown ($100); the Culverhouse Limited Partnership ($1,000); Palmer Ranch Holdings ($1,000); and Ruth’s List of Florida ($635).

Her law firm, Matthews Eastmoore, contributed a total of $987.89.

Good herself put in $1,367.50, based on a Sarasota News Leader review of the records, while her husband contributed $1,000.

Rita Jouniari. Image from the Sarasota County Democratic Party website

Jouniari brought in $23,429.80 in cash as of Nov. 30, with in-kind contributions totaling $672. She put in $2,700 of the total, her financial records show.

Her expenditures were $9,261.32.

As of Nov. 30, Buchanan — who is the son of Republican U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan of Longboat Key — had raised $227,130 in cash and $16,572.54 in in-kind contributions, his financial report shows. His expenditures totaled $57,731.32.

Among his contributors have been Sarasota Ford, which is a Buchanan family business ($1,000); Gold Coast Eagle Distributing ($1,000); Dennis ($1,000) and Graciela ($1,000) McGillicuddy; former Sarasota County Commissioner Paul Mercier ($250); the Sarasota Kennel Club ($1,000); Jesse Biter ($1,000) and Biter Enterprises ($1,000); state Rep. Joe Gruters ($100) and Gruters’ wife, Sidney ($100); the Beall’s PAC ($1,000); Randy Benderson, CEO of Benderson Development Co. ($1,000); Benderson Development Co. ($1,000); the Republican Party of Florida ($9,000); and Publix Supermarkets ($1,000).

Buchanan’s family members have put in $7,200, according to a News Leader review of the records, with his father’s campaign finance committee adding another $1,000.

As of Nov. 30, Foxall had raised $11,097 and spent $2,522.18, her records show.

She has put in $50 of her own money, and the Libertarian Party of Florida has contributed $1,000 to her campaign, according to a News Leader review of the documents. The Libertarian party of Brevard County gave her $100, while the Libertarian Part of Manatee County gave her $400.