State Senate Candidate May Have Offered Opponent $25,000 to Switch District

Meet Andrew Korge. He really, really wants to become a politician. He first signaled his political ambitions last year by publicly discussing a long-term plan that would see him run for a Florida Senate seat that included Miami Beach and much of coastal Miami in 2020. Then redistricting happened. 

Korge decided to run for a state Senate seat this year in a completely different part of the county, one that represents Homestead, Florida City, and the Keys. 

It all seemed well. He would have been the only Democrat in the race, but just days before the official filing deadline, he switched tracks again and decided he would run in yet another district, one that includes Kendall. 

The problem is that District 40 already has two Democrats running. In fact, one is sitting state senator and current Miami-Dade Democratic Party chairman Dwight Bullard. The other is former state rep Ana Rivas Logan. 

Both have now come forward and claimed that Korge tried to persuade them to run in other districts. Bullard says Korge even offered him $25,000. 

Bullard says Korge approached both him and his political consultant to switch races to run in District 38 (that's the redistricted version of the seat that includes Miami Beach, which Korge originally wanted). According to Sunshine State News, Korge also tried to sweeten the deal with $25,000, presumably as a campaign donation. 

“I told my adviser: 'You can tell him to take that money and shove it where the sun is not permanent,'" Bullard told SSN.

Rivas Logan claims Korge tried to get her to drop out of the District 40 race and run instead for District 39 (the Homestead-area seat everyone thought Korge would run for this time around). The new District 39 actually leans slightly Democratic, but well-connected Republican Florida Sen. Anitere Flores is running in the district and is expected to rack up a huge campaign war chest. 

Korge, by the way, is the son of prominent Democratic fundraiser Chris Korge. The younger Korge has proven himself adept at fundraising and has built up his own enviable war chest of $700,00. He has the money. He just can't decide in which district to spend it. 

Korge told the Miami Herald that he thought it was common knowledge that Bullard was contemplating moving to District 38, and Korge characterized the exchange as Bullard soliciting money from him if he decided to do so. Bullard denies that version of events. 

The winner of the three-way primary among Korge, Bullard, and Logan will face off against state Rep. Frank Artiles in the general election. 
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Kyle Munzenrieder