PR Newswire, Nov 1, 2002

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Florida Farm Bureau President Carl B. Loop Jr. today expressed "outrage" that a candidate for state commissioner of agriculture would imply that he was endorsed by Florida's largest and oldest agricultural organization.

Speaking from Daytona Beach, where Florida Farm Bureau was conducting its annual meeting, Loop said that organization bylaws prohibit the endorsement of political candidates.

"I am outraged that David Nelson, candidate for commissioner of agriculture, would imply that Farm Bureau has endorsed his candidacy," stated Loop. "Florida Farm Bureau Federation does not endorse candidates for elected office."

Nelson, who is challenging Charles Bronson for Commissioner of Agriculture, cited Farm Bureau among the "army of five voting bloc" to carry him to election.

Nelson, as well as Charles Bronson, is one of the more than 150,000 Farm Bureau members statewide. According to Loop, Nelson has never served in a leadership position in a Farm Bureau organization. "Until this election cycle, he was unknown to our leaders and membership. Florida Farm Bureau Federation has not endorsed him, nor to my knowledge has any county Farm Bureau.

"I have publicly urged voters to judge the candidates in the light of their experience in the areas of agriculture and consumer services. The Commissioner's office is vital to the lives of all Floridians. It should not be trivialized," Loop concluded.

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CONTACT: Rod Hemphill, director, Public Relations, +1-352-374-1516, or Mary Ann Kwader, manager, Public Relations, +1-352-374-1533, both of Florida Farm Bureau

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