A local Tea Party leader says he’ll throw his hat in the ring for an open Sarasota County Commission seat. Randy McLen­don, the Engle­wood Real­tor who orga­nized the local Tak­ing Our Coun­try Back fac­tion of the Tea Party, has made a campaign announcement, but has yet to file to run for the Sara­sota County Com­mis­sion seat being vacated by Jon Thaxton.

McLen­don said he took the polit­i­cal tem­per­a­ture of tea party and con­ser­v­a­tive lead­ers to assess their sup­port and “The encour­age­ment I received from that announce­ment is prompt­ing me to take the next nec­es­sary steps,” including the process of officially filing for the campaign this week.