Steve Southerland (Florida politician)

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Steve Southerland
Steve Southerland, Official Portrait, 112th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Florida's 2nd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2011
Preceded by Allen Boyd
Personal details
Born (1965-10-10) October 10, 1965 (age 49)[1]
Nashville, Tennessee, USA[1]
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Susan Southerland
Children four
Residence Panama City, Florida, U.S.
Alma mater Jefferson State Community College A.A.
Troy State University B.S.
Profession Businessman, Mortician
Religion Southern Baptist[2]
Website Southerland For Congress

William Steve Southerland, II[3] (born October 10, 1965)[4] is an American politician who has been the U.S. Representative for Florida's 2nd congressional district since 2011. The district includes most of the eastern Florida Panhandle, from Panama City to the state capital, Tallahassee. He is a member of the Republican Party.

Early life and education[edit]

Southerland is a lifelong resident of Panama City. He is the fourth generation of five in his family to live in Bay County. In 1983, he graduated from A. Crawford Mosley High School. He earned a B.S. degree in Business Management from Troy State University and an A.A. degree in Mortuary Science from Jefferson State Junior College.[5]

Business career[edit]

Southerland is current co-owner/President of Southerland Family Funeral Homes, founded in 1955.[6] He is also a founding partner in two other businesses, Genesis Granite & Stone, LLC and K & B Land and Timber Company, LLC. He was appointed by the Governor of Florida to be a member of the Florida Board of Funeral Directors,[7] serving as Chairman during his second term. He was appointed by the Governor of Florida to be Chairman of the Early Learning Coalition of Northwest Florida.[8]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

2010 election[edit]

Southerland won the Republican primary against Eddie Hendry, Ron McNeil, Barbara F. Olschner and David Scholl.[9] He was part of the GOP Young Gun Program.[10][11] He was endorsed by U.S. Congressmen Eric Cantor, Jeff Miller, former State House Speaker Allan Bense, former Democrat Governor Wayne Mixson, State Rep. Jimmy Patronis, State Rep. Marti Coley, former U.S. Congressman Bill Grant, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, Lynn Haven Mayor, Walter Kelley.[12] It was Southerland's first bid for elected office.

Southerland faced seven-term Democratic incumbent Allen Boyd in the November general election. Independent candidates Paul C. McKain and Dianne Berryhill were also on the ballot, and Ray Netherwood had qualified as a write-in candidate.

Real Clear Politics rated this race a "Leans GOP".[13] CQ Politics rated the election as a toss up.[14]

In the November 2 general election, Southerland defeated Boyd with 52 percent of the vote. Southerland is the first freshman Republican to represent the 2nd since its formation in 1963 (it was the 9th District from 1963–1967 and has been the 2nd since 1967).[15] The only other Republican to ever represent this district, Bill Grant, was originally elected as a Democrat in 1986, but switched parties midway through his second term.

2012 election[edit]

Southerland defeated former State Senator Alfred Lawson, Jr. 53% 175,856 votes to 47% 157,634 out of 333,718 ballots cast on November 6, 2012 for his re-election to a second term in Congress.

2014 election[edit]

Southerland is running for re-election. He ran unopposed for the Republican nomination in the primary.[16]


Southerland opposes military intervention in Syria.[17]

He voted for the Amash-Conyers Amendment, which would prohibit the collection of records by the National Security Agency under the Patriot Act.[18]

He voted against the 2014 Farm Bill, a $1 trillion bill which expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that would kick in when prices drop.[19]

Southerland has stated that he wants to replace the Affordable Care Act “with an approach that incorporates free-market principles.”[20]

On July 11, 2014, Southerland introduced the Waters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act of 2014 (H.R. 5078; 113th Congress), a bill that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) from implementing or enforcing certain proposed regulations regarding the use of the nation’s waters and wetlands.[21][22]

Committee assignments[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Steve and Susan Southerland have four children. He is a Charter member and former trustee of Northstar Church.

Southerland served as Chairman of the Bay County Chamber of Commerce and Chairman of the Salvation Army Advisory Board as well as such community boards including the Florida State University Panama City Development Board and the Covenant Hospice Foundation Board.[23] He is a member of the National Rifle Association and founding member and former Vice President of the Bay Patriots.[23]


  1. ^ a b "Guide to the New Congress". CQ Roll Call. 2010-11-04. Retrieved 2010-11-24. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Genealogy site for Southerland family
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Product Showroom". Southerland Family Funeral Homes and Crematory. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  7. ^ "Rep. Steve Southerland II (R-Fla.)". Roll Call. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  8. ^ "Education". House of Representatives. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  9. ^ Blake, Aaron (2009-10-30). "Second GOPer signs up to face Rep. Boyd - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room". Retrieved 2010-08-21. 
  10. ^ CQ politics blogsite
  11. ^ "NRCC Expands Lower Tiers in 'Young Guns'". Roll Call. Jul 21, 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  12. ^ Southerland For
  13. ^ "Florida 2nd District - Southerland vs. Boyd". Real Clear Politics. 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2010-10-29. 
  14. ^ CQPolitics
  15. ^ Bojorquez, Manuel (Sep 4, 2013). "Fla. congressman hears it from constituents about Syria". CBS News. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  16. ^ "2014 Florida House Primaries Results". Politico. Aug 28, 2014. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  17. ^ McLaughlin, Tom (Sep 3, 2013). "Miller, Southerland Voice Their Opinions on Syria". NWFDaily News. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  18. ^ "Amash amendment: the full roll call". The Guardian. Jul 24, 2013. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  19. ^ Rogers, Alex (Jun 21, 2013). "How Food Stamps Killed the Farm Bill". Time. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  20. ^ Olwell, Chris (Aug 20, 2014). "Medical group endorses Southerland". News Herald. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  21. ^ "CBO - H.R. 5078". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  22. ^ "H.R. 5078 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  23. ^ a b Southerland For Congress

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Allen Boyd
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Florida's 2nd congressional district

January 3, 2011 – present
Succeeded by
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Terri Sewell
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Steve Stivers