Pinellas County residents living in District 13 have representation in the U.S. House of Representatives again. Congressman David Jolly was officially sworn in as the newest member of the House Thursday afternoon.
Jolly, 41, a Republican, defeated Democrat Alex Sink, 65, and Libertarian Marcus Overby, 27, in a special election March 11. Jolly received 48.44 percent of 184,045 votes cast. Sink received 46.55 percent and Overby with 4.84 percent, according to final unofficial results posted after the Canvassing Board met March 14. Forty percent of registered voters within District 13, which includes all of Pinellas with the exception of a few precincts in north and south county.
Jolly released a transcript of his first speech made on the floor of the U.S. House.
He thanked his new colleagues and the people in District 13.
“And to the people of Florida’s 13th Congressional District, I want to say thank you today for giving me a remarkable life opportunity: the opportunity to serve,” Jolly said. “For my new colleagues, I simply want you to know two things about this new member.
“First, I believe in this institution: the people's House. I believe in all that is good and right about this institution; the opportunity that this institution has to make our nation better; to direct our nation down the right path; to solve problems for all of us and secure for every American for all of us the sacred blessings of liberty.
“The second thing I'd like you to know about this new Congressman is I believe in civility. I had the wonderful opportunity to work for a man with whom you each served and left an indelible legacy in this House, one of civility.
“We are all elected to fight for our communities; to fight for our constituents. We are elected to fight for our convictions and for the causes we believe in. But, it is a fight for the future of our country. It is not a fight against each other.
“I know that we have had a nationally-watched race. That race is now over. And now it is time for me as a member of Congress and of this body to join with each of you to follow in the footsteps that you have taken in serving your community as I begin to serve mine. You have my commitment today to work with each and every one of you. I look forward to it.”
Jolly will serve an eight-month term. He is completing the term left vacant when former Rep. C.W. “Bill” Young died Oct. 18. Young served the people of Pinellas County in the House for nearly 43 years.
According to the Florida Division of Elections, four candidates have already announced intentions to run for the District 13 seat in the U.S. House of Representatives in November.
Two Republicans, John-Michael Fleig of St. Pete Beach and Frederick Preston Thomson of Clearwater are listed “active” as are Democrat Donald Warren Hackett Jr. of Largo and independent Michael S. Levinson of St. Petersburg.
A primary election is scheduled for Aug. 26. The general election is on Nov. 4.
About David Jolly
Jolly was born in Dunedin Oct. 31, 1972. He has lived at his home in Indian Shores since October 2005. He received a divorce from his wife of 15 years in January. He worked for the late Bill Young as an adviser and General Counsel until 2007.
He is vice president at Clearwater-based Boston Financial Group, CEO at Olympus Foundation Management, and owner of Three Bridges Advisors, a lobbyist firm, Three Bridges Law and 1924 Communications.
He graduated from Pasco High School in 1990 and received a Bachelor of Art’s degree in history from Emory College in Atlanta, Ga. in 1994 and Juris Doctor Cum Laude from George Mason University of Law in Arlington, Va. in 2001.
Jolly serves on the Tampa Bay Veterans Alliance Board of Advisors, Stetson Law School Elder Law Board of Advisors, Jessie’s Law Board of Directors, Town of Indian Shores Board of Adjustment, Florida Federal Contractors Association Board of Directors and previously served on the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Suncoast Board of Advisors.