Shalala Criticized for Skipping Debate
Frontrunner in race for Ros-Lehtinen’s seat said she told organizers she had prior obligations

Donna Shalala said “There will be lots of time to debate” after she didn’t attend one between Democratic candidates for retiring Rep. Ilean Ros-Lehtinen’s seat on Tuesday. (Aaron Davidson/Getty Images file photo)

Some Democrats in Florida’s 27th District criticized frontrunner Donna Shalala for disrespecting organizers of a debate by skipping it on Tuesday.

Shalala defended her decision not to attend, the Miami Herald reported, saying, “There will be lots of time to debate.”

Report: Some Republicans Want to Abandon Florida’s 27th
Ros-Lehtinen’s retirement gives Democrats a prime pickup opportunity

Republicans are struggling to find a candidate to run for the seat of retiring Florida Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A lack of top-tier candidates has some Republicans considering whether to invest in holding Florida’s 27th District instead of focusing on more crucial House races.

Longtime GOP Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is retiring at the end of her term from a district that broke for Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Florida Republican Who Once Claimed Alien Abduction Announces House Bid
Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera is joining the GOP primary for Ros-Lehtinen’s open seat

Former Doral, Florida, city councilwoman Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera once claimed aliens took her up in their spacecraft controlled by quartz stones. Now she's running for Florida's open 27th District seat in 2018.(bettinaforcongress.com)

Either Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera has been watching too much Syfy Channel or she’s really just that special. We’ll probably never know for sure.

No matter, the 59-year-old Republican, who once recalled in an interview a visit from three blond-haired aliens who took her aboard their spacecraft, is running for Florida’s 27th District seat being vacated by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

‘Compassionate Republican’ Announces Run for Ros-Lehtinen’s Seat
Former Miami-Dade school board member Raquel Regaldo declares herself a moderate

Republican Raquel Regalado said she is the kind of moderate who can win in a district that Hillary Clinton carried in the presidential election last year. (Raquel Regalado via Facebook)

Former Miami Dade School Board member Raquel Regalado announced her candidacy for outgoing Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s seat in Florida's 27th Congressional District in 2018.

Ros-Lehtinen announced she would not seek re-election last month, creating an opening for Democrats to pick up a seat in a district that voted overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Jeb Bush Jr. Approached to Run for Ros-Lehtinen’s Seat
Florida Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera is also being recruited

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush introduces his Jeb Bush Jr. during a 2015 presidential campaign rally. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images file photo)

Florida Republicans are reaching out to Jeb Bush Jr., son of former Gov. Jeb Bush, to run for the seat of retiring Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

The National Republican Congressional Committee approached Bush Jr., as well as Florida Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, the Miami Herald reported.

Ros-Lehtinen Challenger Hopes to Ride Anti-Trump Wave Into House
Scott Fuhrman lost to incumbent by 10 points in 2016

Scott Fuhrman lost to Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., in 2016. He plans on running against her again in 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Democrat Scott Fuhrman, who challenged Florida Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen last year, plans to face her in a rematch in 2018.

Fuhrman, who lost by 10 points, told the Miami Herald that he expects to ride a wave of anger toward President Donald Trump.