|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Florida's 15th district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2021
|Preceded by||Ross Spano|
|Member of the Lakeland City Commission|
from the Southeast district
January 1, 2018 – January 3, 2021
|Preceded by||Edie Yates|
|Succeeded by||Don Selvage|
|Born||August 23, 1964|
Thomaston, Georgia, U.S.
|Education||United States Naval Academy (BS)|
Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University (MBA)
|Branch/service||United States Navy|
Clifford Scott Franklin (born August 23, 1964) is an American politician and businessman who is the U.S. representative for Florida's 15th congressional district. He is a member of the Republican Party.
Born in Thomaston, Georgia, Franklin was raised in Lakeland, Florida. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Naval Academy in 1986 and served in the United States Navy as a Naval Aviator flying the S-3 Viking off of multiple aircraft carriers and routinely deploying overseas. Franklin later earned a Master of Business Administration from Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University and is a graduate of the Armed Forces Staff College.
Franklin spent 26 years in the Navy, 14 on active duty and 12 in the Naval Reserve, including being mobilized/recalled to active duty with U.S. Central Command after the September 11 attacks. He retired with the rank of Commander.
In 2000, Franklin joined Lanier Upshaw, an insurance agency, and became its chief executive officer. In 2017, he was elected as a city commissioner for the Southeast district of Lakeland, Florida, succeeding longtime incumbent Edie Yates. Because of his run for Congress, Franklin was required to resign his seat on the city commission; he chose to make his resignation effective on January 3, 2021, the day he was sworn into Congress. Franklin was succeeded on the city commission by Don Selvage, a former commissioner who held the seat as an interim appointee from January 4 until the April 6 special election to fill the vacancy.
In March 2020, Franklin announced his primary bid against freshman congressman Ross Spano, who was facing investigation by federal investigators over financial irregularities. Franklin won the primary, receiving his party’s nomination for the general election, in which he defeated Democratic nominee Alan Cohn.
|Republican||Ross Spano (incumbent)||29,265||48.8|