Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs said Friday she’s not currently talking to anyone about running for Congress against Democratic incumbent U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy and expressed little immediate enthusiasm for the prospect.
While also disclosing no immediate activity for either race, Jacobs appeared to show at least a glimmer of interest in running for the Florida chief financial officer position in 2018.
Jacobs, who is term-limited out at the end of 2018 from the mayor’s position, has been widely viewed as a Republican with higher office potential in her future, and in recent weeks has been widely rumored to be a possible candidate in Florida’s 7th Congressional District, the northern Orange and Seminole counties district where Murphy won an upset over 12-term Republican U.S. Rep. John Mica last fall.
Jacobs also is known as a politician who keeps her political ambitions tightly guarded.
On Friday, following an Orange County Tourist Development Commission meeting, she dismissed any immediate ambitions and insisted she has not decided yet what she would like to do after her mayoral term expires.
“I’m not asking around. I haven’t made any decisions at this point about what I mean to do when I leave,” Jacobs said.
When asked if she has any interest at all in running for Congress, she said, “I think it’s premature to answer that question.”
Other Republicans considering a run have expressed far more immediate interest, but no one has filed yet. On Thursday state Rep. Mike Miller of Winter Park said he is “seriously considering” the prospect. This spring state Sen. David Simmons of Altamonte Springs said he was “98 percent certain” he would run.
What about CFO in 2018?
“I’m not certain. I haven’t ruled that out, but the only thing that I know is whatever I do whether it’s public sector or private sector, my goal is to do something that is meaningful,” Jacobs said. “I mean, I had a job for ten years (in banking) in the private sector; paid well, but I didn’t come home at night feeling I was having a positive impact in people’s lives. And that’s what I’ve been able to do for the last seven years.”