Bud Chiles Makes Governor’s Race a Three-Way Affair
Lawton "Bud" Chiles, the son of the late governor and senator, announced Thursday he is running for governor of Florida with no party affiliation.
Chiles said as an independent, he'll take no money from political parties, political action committees or "big corporations."
Florida is now the only state in the nation with two very active and credible statewide independent campaigns. The other, of course, being current Governor Charlie Crist who is running for U.S. Senate as an independent.
Chiles has hinted at a statewide run for almost a year, first as a CFO candidate and then as governor. He briefly ran for governor in 2006 but withdrew because he did not meet the state's residency requirements to qualify for office.
Until recently, he served as president of the Lawton Chiles Foundation, a children's advocacy group, and has been involved in a number of business deals throughout the state, including the renovation of the Governor's Inn, a Tallahassee hotel.
A run as an independent could spell the most trouble for likely Democratic nominee Alex Sink, because they would likely be competing for many of the same votes in a general election contest. A divided Democratic electorate could clear the way for a Republican nominee to seize the state's top elected office.