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Florida Rising Announces First Round of Statewide Endorsements Ahead of 2022 Primaries and Midterms

Florida Rising Supports 66 Statewide Candidates within 12 Counties

After the merger of New Florida Majority and Organize Florida in January of 2021, the new statewide organization, Florida Rising, is announcing its first of several rounds of endorsements in the 2022 Midterms.

In past years, the organization has been influential in state and national level races. In 2018, the organizations’ field campaigns were critical to winning Amendment 4 and bringing the Governor and Senate races to recounts and a margin of less than a percent.  In 2020, the organization was part of efforts that knocked on 1.3 million doors and activated a large-scale virtual organizing program that made 18.1 million phone calls and sent 6.3 million texts, resulting in conversations with 1,240,415 voters that helped turn out over 300,000 first-time voters and catalyze historic voter mobilization. Our endorsed candidates won in 95 out of 132 races.


This year, the organization prioritized the issues foremost on Floridians’ minds: housing, jobs, criminal systems reform, reproductive rights, and a plan to take action on the climate emergency that make up the pillars of the Justice on Every Block campaign.


Among the esteemed list of 66 candidates across 12 counties that Florida Rising is endorsing are the first out LGBTQ+ Latinas if elected, Eunic Ortiz and Janelle Perez, and those who stood up to the censorship acts and Don’t Say Gay bill pushed by the Governor in the last legislative session such as Sen. Shevrin Jones,  Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, and Rep. Tracie Davis of Jacksonville. It includes long-time Haitian community organizer in South Florida, Marleine Bastien, as well as members of Florida Rising running for office such as Guerdy Remey in Seminole County.  


The organization plans a multi-tiered voter outreach strategy to change leadership up and down the ballot including paid ads, door-to-door canvassing, and a series of cultural events for which the legacy organizations have become known.


Andrea Cristina Mercado, Executive Director of Florida Rising, explains:


We are proud to endorse candidates who are committed to putting Floridians first.  The cost of rent is too high and the state’s GOP is doing nothing about it.  The threat of climate chaos is too real and the state’s GOP is creating roadblocks to clean energy.  The state we live in is beautiful and diverse and Florida’s GOP is banning Black history, LGBTQ+ rights, and access to abortion and a self-determined future.


Our current leadership does not represent the people of Florida, the Florida GOP represents its corporate interests and the career ambitions of the Governor.  Thankfully so many people are stepping into the political process at every level of government. Our state is known to be a battleground and those endorsed represent many of those who are stepping up to reclaim democracy and represent the actual needs of our communities.


The stakes have never been higher to get involved and get people who care about our communities into office.  There are dozens of Floridians who are running to put Floridians first and we are proud to back them with this endorsement today and the work we plan to do in the months ahead.”


Endorsed candidates submitted responses to a Florida Rising questionnaire that was reviewed by 5 endorsement committees of members of Florida Rising located across the state who issued their recommendations based on candidates’ answers, previous history, and analysis of the races ahead.


The list of the first-round of endorsements, with more to come, is below:

Alachua/Marion – HD-21 – Rep. Yvonne Hinson – State House
Broward – HD 96 – Rep. Don Daley – State House
Broward – HD 99 – Rep Daryl Campbell – State House
Broward – HD-105 – Rep. Marie Woodson – State House
Broward – HD-88 – Rep. Jervonte Edmonds – State House
Broward/Miami – CD-24 – Rep. Fredericka Wilson – Congressional
Broward/Miami – SD-34 – Sen. Shevrin Jones – State Senate
Duval – HD 14 – Garrett Dennis – State House
Duval – HD-13 – Rep. Angie Nixon – State House
Duval – SD 5 – Rep. Tracie Davis – State Senate
Hillsborough – CD-14 – Rep Kathy Castor – Congressional
Hillsborough – District 3 – Gwen Myers – County Commission
Hillsborough – District 5 – Mariella Smith – County Commission
Hillsborough – District 6 – Karen Perez – School Board
Hillsborough – HD-64 – Rep Susan Valdes – State House
Hillsborough – HD-67 – Rep Fentrice Driskell – State House
Hillsborough – SD-14 – Sen Janet Cruz – State Senate
Hillsborough – District 7 (At Large) – Kimberly Overman – County Commission
Leon – D3 – Jeremy Arthur Matlow – City Commission
Leon – Mayor – Kristin Elizabeth Dozier – City Commission (Tallahassee)
Leon – D1 – Bill Proctor – County Commission
Leon – SD 3 – Sen. Lorrane Ausley – State Senate
Miami Dade – HD- 107 – Rep. Chris Benjamin – State House
Miami-Dade – District 2 (Nonpartisan) – Marleine Bastien – County Commission
Miami-Dade – HD-109 – Ashley V. Gantt – State House
Miami-Dade – SD-38 – Janelle Perez – State Senate
Orange – District 4 (Nonpartisan) – Maribel Gomez Cordero (Incumbent) – County Commission
Orange – HD 41 – Travaris McCurdy – State House
Orange – HD-37 – Rep Carlos Guillermo Smith – State House
Orange – HD-40 – Lavon Bracy Davis – State House
Orange – HD-42 – Rep Anna V Eskamani – State House
Orange – HD-44 – Rep Daisy Morales – State House
Orange – HD-15 – Rep. Kamia Brown – State Senate
Orange – SD-17 – Sen Linda Stewart – State Senate
Orange/Osceola – SD-25 – Sen Victor Torres Jr – State Senate
Orange – HD39 – Tiffany Hughes – State House
Osceola – District 2 (Nonpartisan) – Angela M. Eady – City Commission (Kissimmee)
Osceola – D2 – Viviana Janer – County Commission
Osceola – District 4 – Cheryl Grieb (Incumbent) – County Commission
Osceola – HD-35 – Tom Keen – State House
Osceola – HD-43 – Johanna Lopez – State House
Osceola – HD-46 – Rep. Kristen Arrington (Incumbent) – State House
Osceola – HD-47 – Anthony Nieves – State House
Palm Beach – SD-26 – Sen. Bobby Powell – State Senate
Palm Beach – SD-26 – Sen. Lori Berman – State Senate
Palm Beach – CD-22 – Rep. Lois Frankel – Congressional
Palm Beach – SD 30 – Sen. Tina Polsky – State Senate
Pinellas – District 2 (At Large) – Pat Gerard – County Commission
Pinellas – District 7 – Rene Flowers – County Commission
Pinellas – District 7 – Caprice Edmonds – School Board
Pinellas – HD-60 – Lindsay Cross – State House
Pinellas – SD 18 – Eunic Ortiz – State Senate
Pinellas – SD-16 – Sen. Darryl Rouson – State Senate
Pinellas/Hillsborough – HD-62 – Rep Michelle Rayner – State House
Polk/Orange/Osceola – CD-9 – Rep Darren Soto – Congressional
Seminole – SD10 – Rep. Joy Goff-Marcil – State Senate
Seminole – D2 – Guerdy Remey – City of Altamonte Springs