Republicans run for congress in SW Florida as Trump candidates

Republicans run for congress in SW Florida as Trump candidates

Javier Manjarres
Javier Manjarres
December 21, 2019

With Rep. Francis Rooney (R) having announced his retirement from the U.S. House of Representatives, a slew of would-be successors have filed or will file to run for this highly-coveted Republican congressional seat.

The winner of the Republican primary race could rest assured they will be the next member of congress.

Most, if not all of the current field of candidates appear to be running on President Trump’s presidential coattails, but of the group, who is truly the most aligned with the president?

Mirror, Mirror on the political wall, who is the most Trumpiest one of all?


State Rep. Byron Donalds is all in but has yet to announce his candidacy. Expect an announcement within the first couple of weeks of the new year.

Donalds has cozied up to President Trump a couple of times this year and is considered one of most conservative of the bunch. According to one Trump 2020 operative, Donalds is being closely watched.


Ford O’Connell is a regular TV pundit on both Fox News and Fox Business News, who has been pushing back against the “swamp”  on a regular basis. O’Connell may have a bit of an advantage over the field considering that according to him, he has served as a Trump White House and 2020 campaign surrogate for over three years.

“Donald Trump is the last hope for conservative governance for the foreseeable future in this country”


Dr. William Figlesthaler or Dr. Fig could be seen as the ultimate outsider in the race considering that he has absolutely no political experience of any kind. He is a prominent urological surgeon who is just getting into politics.

Dr. Fig, like the rest of the group, supports all of President Trump’s executive record, including deregulation, tax cuts, trade, and foreign policy.

"My support for the President is largely due to the fact that he is not a politician, rather, an outsider with a proven business record hellbent on disrupting the status quo in Washington.   

State Rep. Dane Eagle is right now the frontrunner in the race. Eagle has scored a whole bunch of state-level endorsements and recently flew on Air Force One after being invited by the White House. Eagle is also very close to Rep. Matt Gaetz (R), one of the president’s most loyal supporters in the U.S. Congress.

Rep. Eagle has known the president for many years. According to Eagle, on one of the many times, he spoke to then-businessman Donald Trump was at Mar-A-Lago to plan a fundraiser for then-Florida Attorney General candidate Charlie Crist. Eagle says that Trump was a “hands-on”  type of guy, who during the logistics planning meeting, turned to him and said, “you don’t say much, do you?

Eagle says he responded by telling him that he appeared to have it all figure out and didn’t really need his input.

“He is consistent. It’s clear he puts America first in all he does.”

State Rep. Heather Fitzenhagen
is not running on Trump. Fitzenhagen is considered a moderate Republican and whose candidacy could play a spoiler role or could surprise everyone and quietly tiptoe her way into congress as the boys duke it out.

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Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres is a nationally renowned award-winning political journalist and Publisher of,,, and He enjoys traveling, playing soccer, mixed martial arts, weight-lifting, swimming, and biking. Javier is also a political consultant and has also authored "BROWN PEOPLE," which is a book about Hispanic Politics. Follow on Twitter: @JavManjarres Email him at

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