Primary elections are literally right around the corner and we thought it would be beneficial to share some of the many changes can be felt as a result of the redistricting process that occurred this past year.
With two congressional seats up for grabs, two slots in the house open and one for the Florida Senate, each district has its own political battles that will continue up until election day. Take a moment to find your district and check out the candidates that will be fighting for you vote this year.
Congressional District 7
The top race catching a lot of attention this season will be fought in District 7. Redistricting has pitted two sitting Republican members of Congress against each other; Congressman John Mica and Congresswoman Sandy Adams.
Whomever is elected is likely to represent the communities of Waterford, Bithlo, UCF and beyond. The race itself has generated much talk over issues related to traffic and pedestrian safety on East Colonial, and the talks on public safety have taken front and center.
Congressional District 9
Redistricting again is the cause for another political upset throughout the area, creating two new congressional districts for Central Florida – one of which has a direct impact on Narcoosseee Road into Osceola County, Lake Nona and Avalon park. Because this is a new seat, there will be a newly elected congressman representing this area.
This opening has created a heated Primary amongst Republicans district wide. John Quinones is a member of the Board of County Commissioners in Osceola County and Julius Melendez is a member of the Osceola County School Board, and the winner of this Primary will face Democrat Alan Grayson in the November election. The elected official will represent the aforementioned communities of Lake Nona, Narcoossee Road and Avalon Park amongst others in Washington.
Florida House District 49
Speaker of the House, Dean Cannon, is term limited this year and will be replaced by someone new in November. The District 49 seat now represents the areas surrounding UCF, Semoran Boulevard and into Waterford Lakes and Eastwood.
There is another hot Primary in this race on both sides of the political spectrum. Republicans Marco Pena, former UCF Student Body President, and Colonial High School teacher and track coach, Rene Plasencia, will take on Democrats Shayan Elahi, civil-rights lawyer, and Equality Florida organizer, Joe Saunders.
Florida House District 50
Avalon Park and the Lake Nona area will both be represented by the winner of District 50 in the general election. Avalon Park resident and a local teacher, Sean Ashby, will face off against current State Representative, Tom Goodson, from Merritt Island.
Florida Senate Seat 13
From UCF to Avalon Park to Lake Nona, there is going to be a new senator representing us in Tallahassee. There’s no primary in this race so make sure to watch for it in the November election. Current Republican Senator and incoming Senate President Andy Gardiner will be facing off against Democrat Christopher Charles Pennington.
As redistricting has drawn the proverbial line in the sand for many communities throughout East Orlando, staying informed on the issues that affect you is the best way to make an informed vote this season. Be sure to get informed and get out and vote this year.
Other Voting Resources:
- Orange County Supervisor of Elections – Register to vote, find your precinct, view results and more.
- League of Women Voters of Orange County – Priority issues, voter resources, contact information for elected officials and more.
By Victor Ocasio