Tampa, Fla. – Republican candidate for Congressional 15 Laurel Lee today announced that highly decorated Army Special Forces Combat Veteran and Purple Heart Recipient Jarrid “Jay” Collins is endorsing her candidacy. Collins, who served his country for two decades in the U.S. Army, is currently a candidate for the Florida State Senate, having previously considered a bid for Congressional District 15. The newly drawn Congressional District 15 encompasses Northeast Hillsborough County, along with parts of Pasco and Polk Counties.
“Jay is a warrior, not a career politician or bureaucrat, and I am honored to have his support for my candidacy,” said Lee. “Having grown up in a military family, I know the sacrifices Jay has made and the type of man it takes to run toward danger again and again. Jay Collins will serve the state of Florida well and will bring his fight for our area to Tallahassee. I am honored to give him my full support.”
“Laurel Lee will bring the commitment to veterans and our military that we need in Washington,” said Collins. “As a member of Governor DeSantis’ administration, she fought to advance a conservative agenda as his Secretary of State. That’s why we can trust Laurel to take that fight to Washington, and why I am giving her my full support.”
Laurel was appointed by Governor DeSantis as Florida’s 36th Secretary of State in January 2019 and served in this position until May 2022. During her tenure as Secretary of State, Lee worked to strengthen Florida’s elections infrastructure and cybersecurity defenses, increasing voter registration and participation, and ensuring accurate and secure elections in Florida. Following Florida’s successful 2020 election, Laurel was recognized as a national leader on election policy and security. She was a member of the Republican State Leadership Committee Election Integrity Commission, a member of the Elections Infrastructure Government Coordinating Council, on the executive committee and policy chair for the Republican Secretaries of State Committee, and on the executive board and co-chair of the Elections Committee for the National Association of Secretaries of State, where she spotlighted the success of Florida on the national stage. Prior to serving in the DeSantis administration, Laurel served as a Circuit Court Judge in Florida’s Thirteenth Judicial Circuit in Hillsborough County, appointed by then-Governor Rick Scott. Before becoming a judge, Laurel served as a federal prosecutor for the United States Attorney’s Office in the Middle District of Florida. Raised by a two-star general in the United States Air Force and a public school teacher, Laurel has family ties in eastern Hillsborough County that go back more than 70 years.
For more information on the Laurel Lee for Congress campaign, visit votelaurel.com and facebook.com/VoteLaurel.
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