Darcy Richardson has decided to end his bid to topple state Rep. Kim Daniels, D-Jacksonville, to run for governor as the Reform Party’s candidate.
Florida Politics reported this week that Richardson ended his no party affiliated bid against Daniels to run for governor.
Richardson, who lives in Jacksonville,is a familiar name to many activists and political junkies across the nation. Besides serving as the campaign manager for former U.S. Sen. Eugene McCarthy’s, D-Minn., independent presidential campaign in 1988, Richardson is an expert on third-party politics, having written a multivolume history on them and he also writes in various media outlets.
In 2016, Richardson ran for the Reform Party’s presidential nomination but he came up short at the convention, losing to businessman Rocky De La Fuente who has run in more than a half dozen states in various U.S. Senate contests this year.
“The party… seems like a good match and is certainly worth preserving,” Richardson emailed Independent Political Report which broke the news of his 2016 presidential bid. “Each of us, I suppose, must bear witness for the times in which we live. In the irrational age of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton — with the country’s leading nationally-organized third party playing the role of apologist for the presumptive Democratic nominee while trying to gain the establishment’s blessing — a Reform Party candidacy begins to make some sense.”
Richardson has been increasingly politically active in recent years. Back in 2010, economist and gubernatorial candidate Farid Khavari tapped Richardson as his running mate as they ran with no party affiliation. Richardson took on President Barack Obama in the 2012 Democratic primaries but ended up dropping out to support former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer’s short lived presidential bid outside of the major parties which included seeking the Reform Party nod.
From having backed Ross Perot, Roemer and Ralph Nader, Richardson is no stranger to the Reform Party . After Roemer ended his presidential bid in 2012, Richardson sought the party nomination and, after losing out to De La Fuente in 2016, he did encourage supporters to back the Reform Party.
The party had some highs back in the late 1990s with Perot almost taking 10 percent on its line in the 1996 presidential election and Jesse Ventura winning the Minnesota governorship as a Reform Party candidate in 1998. But party factionalism and in-fighting limited its impact as the party swang to the right to nominate Pat Buchanan in 2000 only to swing over to the left to back Nader four years later. Some of its more recent presidential candidates--Ted Weill in 2008 and Andre Barnett in 2012--each pulled in less than 1,000 votes but De La Fuente pulled more than 33,000 votes last time out.