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Greg Evers

2 Florida legislators among candidates in 1st District

A legislator who backed comments describing Black Lives Matter as a terrorist group and another who held an online giveaway of a semi-automatic rifle are among eight Republicans trying to succeed a retiring congressman in Florida's conservative Panhandle.

U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller's heavily conservative 1st Congressional District, which is home to five military installations and a large population of veterans, has gone Republican since 1994. State Sen. Greg Evers and state Rep. Matt Gaetz announced they were running in the Aug. 30 primary after Miller said in March he was retiring after eight terms.

In late June, Evers raffled off a semi-automatic rifle among people in the...