Republican House candidate Greg Steube has canceled campaign events for a week after the sudden death of his rival. April Freeman, the Democrat seeking to replace retiring Rep. Tom Mooney in Florida's 17th District, died Sunday night of what husband David Freeman believes was a heart attack, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports. It is "with great sadness that I feel I must inform all of you that my beloved wife April passed away suddenly last night," David Freeman said in a Facebook post Monday. "To all of her family and friends here on Facebook, my heart aches with you."
Freeman, a 54-year-old mother of two, suspended her career as a TV and film producer for her third run for Congress. She "was dedicated to making a better future for all Floridians," Florida Democratic Party Chair Terrie Rizzo said in a statement. "Just last night she was in the office, making calls and working to get out the vote." Steube said in a tweet that he "admired her commitment to the causes she cared about" and will cancel campaigns out of respect to her memory. Officials say Freeman's name will remain on the November ballot, but voters will be informed that a vote for Freeman will count as a vote for her replacement, CNN reports. Democratic county chairs have five days to choose a new candidate. (Read more Florida stories.)