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Newt Gingrich endorses Anna Paulina Luna in CD 13 race

Luna faces William Braddock in the Republican Primary.

Former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich is backing Republican candidate Anna Paulina Luna in her run for Florida’s 13th Congressional District.

In announcing his support, Gingrich said Luna is “not just a conservative leader, but a true patriot.”

“The future of our generations is contingent on standing up to the leaders of tomorrow. This burden and blessing has fallen on the shoulders of a select few who have decided to enter the arena of politics,” Gingrich said in a statement. “That is why I have chosen to endorse Anna Paulina Luna. Not just a conservative leader but a true patriot, not compromised, and unwavering in her defense of our country and our Constitution.”

Luna has made headlines as a vocal Donald Trump supporter with a brazen attitude toward guns and political opponents, likely a plus for Gingrich, who is also recognized as an outspoken Trump-ally. Last year, in running for the same congressional seat against incumbent Democrat Charlie Crist, Luna even snagged a public endorsement from Trump.

“I am honored to have the full support and endorsement of former Speaker Gingrich,” Luna said in a statement. “He has long fought for the values Republicans hold dear, including Constitutional principles, limited government, and individual freedom, among others.”

“His historic Contract with America declared proudly that members of Congress are first and foremost accountable to the American people and that the American people deserve Representatives who back up their campaign talk with legislative action. I wholeheartedly agree with that and am committed to being an action-oriented leader for my community,” Luna continued. “And, given that Speaker Gingrich knows a thing or two about winning back a House Majority, I am especially grateful for his faith in me as a candidate and future Representative in the United States Congress.”

Gingrich joins a list of conservative figures endorsing Luna, including radio host and Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk, who offered his support back in May.

Luna faces William Braddock so far in the Republican Primary, although it is unclear if Braddock will continue in the race after recordings leaked of him allegedly threatening to kill Luna. She sought an injunction against Braddock and is set to have a hearing on July 9, with the temporary restraining order against Braddock in effect.

The race also has three Democratic challengers — state Reps. Ben Diamond and Michele Rayner-Goolsby, and Eric Lynn, a former national security adviser in former President Barack Obama’s administration.

CD 13 is currently a fairly purple district. Heading into last year’s presidential election, Republicans, through a massive voter registration effort that will continue into the 2022 midterms, chipped away at the Democratic advantage in the Pinellas County district from 5.2 percentage points to just 4.6.

And with redistricting on the horizon, Republicans leading the process could narrow that even more by shifting district boundaries northward, though they may be reluctant to get too creative with redistricting after the Florida Supreme Court foiled their last attempts to draw a map favorable to the GOP.

Written by Kelly Hayes

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