Florida state Rep. Fant files to run for attorney general

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Republican State Rep. Jay Fant on Monday became the first candidate to enter the race to replace Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.

Fant is a businessman and former CEO of a small Jacksonville bank started by his grandfather. He was elected to the state House in 2014 after winning a primary by just two votes.

He plans to make several stops around the state after the Legislature wraps up its annual session to kick off his campaign, beginning Tuesday in Tallahassee.

He said in an interview Monday that cracking down on business scams would be one of his priorities if elected.

“I’ve seen people taken advantage of and I detest that,” he said. “Preying on the elderly is sinister and rooting out these scams and these scam artists is full-time work.”

Bondi can’t run for re-election because of term limits.

Among bills that Fant has passed since serving in the Legislature was a measure that allows Floridians to designate a custodian to access and manage their social media, email and online financial accounts when they die or become incapacitated. Gov. Rick Scott signed it into law in 2016.

He was also one of the Republican legislators who refused to go along with Republican House Speaker Richard Corcoran’s push to strip the state’s economic development agency, Enterprise Florida, of incentive money to lure businesses to the state.