SARASOTA COUNTY - 

Hail to the Chief, or hail to Joe Gruters. They might be one and the same soon. As expected, the newly– elected State senator gets another term as Sarasota Republican Party chairman and and took a big step toward taking over the top spot at the Republican Party of Florida.

Gruters had stepped away from the local chair, but ended up needing that gig to get the State GOP chair. Gruters has some powerful people in his corner. Governor–elect Ron DeSantis is backing Gruters for the state chairman's job and Gruters was the co–chair of President Donald Trump's Florida campaign.

Charlotte County Republican state committeeman Bob Starr has said he will challenge Gruters.