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Representative intends to stick with Florida House

June 1, 2016
By REP. MATTHEW CALDWELL , Lehigh Acres Citizen

When Congressman Clawson announced he would not run for re-election for District 19, I was urged by a number of constituents and community leaders about the opportunity to represent Southwest Florida in Congress.

Over the last few days my family and I have weighed this decision. And as I told many this weekend, my overwhelming desire is to have a congress person that was competent on the issues and committed to serving our community. For me, two issues stand out above all others for this office: the Everglades and term limits.

On the Everglades, we must have a representative with the discernment to separate the dark money special interest groups that function as a front for the Democratic Party from the true, non-partisan groups focused on real conservation and restoration based on science not rhetoric. Too many of our public officials wasted decades playing those games and our river and estuaries cannot wait on this foolishness any longer.

We must have someone that understands the concept of citizen legislators, supports term limits and is willing to limit their own power to the benefit of the people. For my part, Congress would do well to pass a measure limiting themselves to 12 years in each chamber.

Considering the candidates in the race today, I believe the citizens of Southwest Florida already have a choice of at least one candidate that understands and supports these positions.

Furthermore, on the Everglades, the Florida Legislature passed the historic Legacy Florida package that provides dedicated funding of $200 million annually to finish CERP, Mod Waters, Restoration Strategies and other Everglades projects. Now we need to see that money spent on turning dirt, rather than fighting over radical plans to nowhere.

And on term limits, I believe this amendment will only truly come to pass through the action of the States under Article V of the United States Constitution and I am proud to serve in a leadership role with the Assembly of State Legislatures ( as we work to organize a convention under this Article.

Therefore, I believe I can continue to best serve on both of these issues, as well as the broader needs of the constituents, from a position in the Florida House.

My family and I want to thank the voters for their support in previous elections and ask them to support me for a final term there.

State Rep. Matt Caldwell represents District 79, which includes Lehigh Acres.



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