|President of the Florida Senate|
November 8, 2016
|Preceded by||Andy Gardiner|
|Member of the Florida Senate
from the 25th district
October 7, 2009
|Preceded by||Ken Pruitt|
|Member of the Florida House of Representatives
from the 82nd district
November 7, 2000 – November 7, 2006
|Preceded by||Art Argenio|
|Succeeded by||William Snyder|
October 9, 1961 |
West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Rebecca Horton Negron|
|Children||David, Jonathan, Becca|
|Alma mater||Stetson University (B.A.)
Emory University School of Law (J.D.)
Harvard University (M.P.A.)
Joe Negron (born October 9, 1961) is a Republican member of the Florida State Senate, representing the Treasure Coast area since 2009. He has represented the 25th district, encompassing Martin County, St. Lucie County, and part of northern Palm Beach County, since 2016, after being redistricted from the 32nd and 28th districts. Before winning election to the Florida Senate, Negron served three terms in the Florida House of Representatives, representing the Martin County-based 82nd district from 2000 to 2006.
Negron was born in West Palm Beach, and attended Stetson University, where he served as the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and graduated with his bachelor's degree in 1983. He then attended the Emory University Law School, receiving his Juris Doctor in 1986, and received a Zuckerman Fellowship to attend Harvard University, receiving his Master of Public Administration in 2009. Following his graduation from law school, Negron worked as a private practice attorney in Stuart, specializing in business litigation and land use law.
Florida House of Representatives
In 1999, when State Representative Tom Warner resigned from his seat in the legislature to accept an appointment as the state's first solicitor general, a special election was held to replace him in the 82nd District, which included parts of southern Martin County and northern Palm Beach County.  Negron ran to replace him, and faced Art Argenio, John Whitescarver, Melinda Tumminia, and John Carroll in the Republican primary. Negron placed first in the primary, winning 47% of the vote to Argenio's 30%, but because he did not win a majority, a runoff election was held that Argenio narrowly won with 52% of the vote. When Argenio ran for re-election in 2000, Negron once again challenged him in the primary, along with David Traill, and received a plurality of the vote, thus necessitating another runoff election. During the course of the campaign, the two candidates signed an agreement aimed at stopping the personal attacks on one another. Though both agreed that water discharge from Lake Okeechobee was harming the St. Lucie River, they disagreed on the solution to the problem; Argenio indicated that he would introduce legislation to set a maximum depth of the lake, which Negron blasted, arguing, "I don't think [a] legislator should be setting feet and inches of a lake. Can you imagine the chaos that would ensue if water managers who need flexibility can't make adjustments to the water level? I think it's nuts." The two also disagreed on health care policy, with Negron suggesting that patients should be able to sue HMOs and announcing that he would sponsor legislation that would allow patients to see specialists without approval from their primary care physician, and Argenio calling Negron's plans a "lawyer's bill of rights." Ultimately, Negron narrowly defeated Argenio to win the Republican nomination for the seat, and was unopposed in the general election. He won re-election uncontested in 2002 and 2004 as well.
2006 congressional campaign
Negron initially planned on running for Attorney General of Florida in 2006, but, citing an inability to compete with former Congressman Bill McCollum in the Republican primary, dropped out of the race. However, following Republican Congressman Mark Foley's resignation from Congress following a scandal, he was tapped by Republicans to replace Foley as their nominee in the 16th Congressional District, which stretched from Wellington to Port Charlotte, against Democratic nominee Tim Mahoney, despite the fact that Foley's name would remain on the ballot. Over the course of the campaign, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune endorsed Mahoney over Negron, citing his business experience and his moderate issue positions. When elections supervisors proposed putting signs in voting booths informing voters that any votes cast for Foley would be received by Negron, the Florida Democratic Party sued, arguing that it constituted an unfair advantage for Negron. An appeals court rejected the lawsuit, but required the Florida Secretary of State to provide voters with a notice that any votes cast for Foley would be received by Negron, and any votes cast for Mahoney would be received by Mahoney. Ultimately, Negron narrowly lost to Mahoney by just four thousand votes, receiving 48% of the vote to Mahoney's 50%.
When Ken Pruitt resigned from his seat in the Florida Senate, Negron ran in the special election to replace him in the 28th District, which included eastern Indian River County, Martin County, northern Palm Beach County, and southern St. Lucie County. Negron was initially set to face former State Representative Art Argenio, whom he defeated in 2000, in the Republican primary, but Argenio withdrew, allowing Negron to win the nomination unopposed. He faced Bill Ramos, the Democratic nominee, in the general election, and campaigned on protecting the St. Lucie River, promoting biotechnology, and increasing education spending, declaring, "I'm looking forward to working hard to continue building on the foundation that Senator Ken Pruitt built with the research coast." He ran for re-election in 2010 and was elected unopposed. During the 2011 legislative session, Negron introduced legislation that aimed to reduce witness misidentifications by changing the procedure by which witnesses were shown photographs; under Negron's proposal, witnesses would be shown one photograph at a time by a person who did not know the identity of the real suspect. He argued that his proposed changes would increase the amount of guilty people convicted and reduce the amount of innocent people convicted, arguing, "Once you get picked out of a lineup, the odds of you being convicted is nearly 100 percent."
In 2012, following the reconfiguration of the state's legislative districts, Negron was moved into the 32nd District, where he ran for re-election. He was opposed by Ray D'Amiano, a businessman and the Democratic nominee, who raised little money, and was attacked by D'Amiano for the amount of money he was raising. The Palm Beach Post endorsed Negron, praising him as one of the legislature's "most influential Republican leaders" and "one of his party's more thoughtful and moderating voices." They noted, however, "We hope Sen. Negron does modify his position on many issues, from the expansion of Medicaid to the need to tax Internet sales to pay for priorities like public education." Negron ended up defeating D'Amiano by a wide margin, receiving 60% of the vote to D'Amiano's 40%.
Negron's district was again reconfigured and renumbered after court-ordered redistricting in 2016.
Joe Negron has received an A+ rating from the National Rifle Association.
- "Legislator Is Chosen Florida's Solicitor General". Sun-Sentinel. February 26, 1999. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Chávez, Stella M. (September 25, 2000). "Gop Hopefuls Ready For 3rd Tight Contest". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Sharockman, Aaron (July 18, 2006). "Race for attorney general is already down to two". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- "GOP Picks Negron to Replace Foley on Florida Ballot". Fox News. October 3, 2006. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- "U.S. House, District 16: We recommend Tim Mahoney". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. October 23, 2006. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Blum, Vanessa (October 28, 2006). "Court Allows Signs Stating Foley Votes To Go To Negron". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Kam, Dara (May 28, 2009). "Argenio to drop out of primary against Negron for Pruitt Senate seat". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Bennett, George (August 4, 2009). "Joe Negron scores massive win in special state Senate election". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Stutzman, Rene (February 28, 2011). "State senator to cops: Clean up the way you do police lineups". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Stapleton, Christine (October 16, 2012). "Negron outraising political newcomer". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Marra, Andrew (October 25, 2012). "Editorial: Negron over D'Amiano". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved June 11, 2014.