With one week left before the general election, The Florida Standard brings you this comprehensive voter guide. Share this guide and get out this week and vote!
(all candidates are listed in alphabetical order)
Charlie Crist (D) – Liberal
Charlie Crist served in the U.S. House from 2017 to 2022 representing St. Petersburg as a Democrat. Previously he was a Republican state senator, education commissioner, attorney general, and governor. Crist made abortion rights the central focus of his campaign, pledging to sign an executive order “defending the right to access a safe abortion as guaranteed by the Florida Constitution.” He also said he would veto “anti-choice” legislation. On multiple occasions, Crist said he would consider mandating masks in Florida. Crist voted this year in the U.S. House for the largest tax increase in American history.
Ron DeSantis (R) – Conservative
Ron DeSantis is the incumbent Governor of Florida. He served in the U.S. Congress from 2013 to 2018. He was a JAG lawyer in the U.S. Navy. The governor has championed his “Keep Florida Free” agenda, pushing back against COVID-19 restrictions. His policies have kept Florida’s economy strong and schools open. This year he signed the largest tax-relief package in Florida’s history.
Aramis Ayala (D) – Liberal
Aramis Ayala was State Attorney in Orange County from 2017–2021. She was also an assistant public defender for ten years where she said she fought to make sure all those accused had proper representation. Ayala raised $147,000 with almost no support from Florida’s Democratic Party. Ayala made headlines when she announced that her office would never seek the death penalty – no matter the crime.
Ashley Moody (R) – Conservative
Ashley Moody is the incumbent attorney general. Moody raised more than $3 million for her campaign with the support of the Republican Party of Florida. Her political committee, Friends of Ashley Moody, which has no limit on individual contributions, raised $11.65 million. Moody has repeatedly fought back against efforts that would undermined brave law enforcement officers and put Floridians in harm’s way. This past year she crushed big pharma in multiple lawsuits, winning $3.2 Billion to fight opioid abuse in local communities.
Chief Financial Officer
Adam Hattersley (D) – Liberal
Adam Hattersley is a former state representative. Hattersley said Patronis’ efforts on property insurance have not gone far enough. The Navy veteran hopes to overhaul the state’s insurance regulation system by changing its leadership.
Jimmy Patronis Jr. (R) – Conservative
Jimmy Patronis is the incumbent CFO. He says tackling Florida’s skyrocketing property insurance rates is a priority. He worked to expand health insurance benefits for first responders and secured additional funding for firefighters and the state’s search & rescue teams. Patronis’ Urban Search & Rescue Teams were first on the ground immediately after Hurricane Ian passed through the state.
Commissioner of Agriculture
Naomi Esther Blemur (D) – Liberal
Naomi Blemur is a businesswoman. She is the granddaughter of migrant farmworkers. She raised $84,000. Blemur recently lost official support from Florida’s Democratic Party.
Wilton Simpson (R) – Conservative
Outgoing Senate President Wilton Simpson is an egg farmer and former owner of an environmental cleanup company. He raised $10.4 million with donations from the sugar industry, developers, casinos, and utility companies. Simpson says he wants lower taxes, limited government, personal freedom, and a better quality of life. The four words that make him proudest are: “I am a farmer.”
Florida Supreme Court (retention)
This is a “merit retention” election. Florida law requires Florida Supreme Court justices and appeals court judges to be placed on the ballot in nonpartisan elections every six years. Voters determine whether the judges should remain on the court for another six-year term. This year, five Supreme Court justices will be on the ballot.
Charles T. Canady – Originalist
Canady was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court by Gov. Charlie Crist in August 2008. At the time Crist was a registered Republican. A poll of Florida Bar members in good standing shows that 69% recommend keeping him on the court. His opinions have been objective and non-partisan.
John Couriel – Originalist
Couriel was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court by Gov. Ron DeSantis in June 2020. A poll of Florida Bar members in good standing shows that 64% recommend keeping him on the court. His opinions have been objective and non-partisan.
Jamie Grosshans – Originalist
Grosshans was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court by Gov. Ron DeSantis in September 2020. A poll of Florida Bar members in good standing shows that 62% recommend keeping her on the court. Her opinions have been objective and non-partisan.
Jorge Labarga – Activist
Labarga was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court by Gov. Charlie Crist in January 2009. At the time Crist was a registered Republican. A poll of Florida Bar members in good standing shows that 87% recommend removing him from the court. His opinions have been politically charged and he is considered an activist.
Ricky Polston – Originalist
Polston was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court by Gov. Charlie Crist in October 2008. At the time Crist was a registered Republican. A poll of Florida Bar members in good standing shows that 72% recommend keeping him on the court. His opinions have been objective and non-partisan.
Proposed Amendments to the Florida Constitution
The general election ballot contains three proposed constitutional amendments. All proposed amendments were introduced by the Florida Legislature. Amendments require a 60 percent voting majority to pass.
AMENDMENT 1 Limitation on the Assessment of Real Property Used for Residential Purposes
Pros: Florida is a unique state at risk of flooding. Supporters argue that this amendment will protect homeowners who take proactive measures to protect their property from flooding. They believe it will also incentivize them to do so. This bipartisan amendment received 98.33 percent approval in the Florida House of Representatives and 100 percent approval in the Florida State Senate in 2021.
Cons: Opponents argue that prohibiting these improvements from being considered in the assessed value for property taxes would reduce the amount of ad valorem taxes that could be collected to fund services by local governments.
AMENDMENT 2 Abolishing the Constitution Revision Commission (CRC)
Pros: The CRC is a 37-member commission outlined in the Florida constitution that sets its own rules and procedures. It provides another pathway for the people of Florida to propose amendments to the state constitution. But many legislators on both sides of the isle, including Rep. Mike Beltran who sponsored the amendment to abolish the CRC, say the committee lacks the experience to propose effective amendments to the people of Florida. Gov. Ron DeSantis has criticized the commission for “bundling” topics together in one proposed amendment, such as linking a ban on offshore oil drilling with a ban on vaping in workplaces. He announced his support for repeal at the end of the 2019 Session, saying that the bundling issue was a major source of irritation.
Cons: Opponents argue that lawmakers should improve the CRC by tightening its procedures and requiring more qualifications for members instead of abolishing the commission. Supporters of the CRC say that recent laws have made the citizen initiative process to amend the constitution more difficult and more expensive.
AMENDMENT 3 Additional Homestead Property Tax Exemption for Specified Critical Public Services Workforce
Pros: Any primary residence in Florida is eligible for a homestead tax exemption of $25,000. An additional homestead tax exemption of $25,000 is available if the property’s value is between $50,000 and $75,000. This amendment would authorize an additional homestead property tax exemption of $50,000 on a property’s value between $100,000 and $150,000 for primary residences owned by qualifying public service workers. Supporters believe that critical public service workers deserve a tax break.
Cons: Opponents argue that the exemption would greatly jeopardize the funds available for local government services, while not guaranteeing that public service workers could even purchase homes, much less afford to keep them.
Val Demings (D) – Liberal
Val Demings served in the U.S. House since 2017. She was in law enforcement for 27 years, serving as Orlando’s police chief from 2007 to 2011. Demings campaigned to “defund the police” but later changed position and said “I am the police.” Demings made abortion a central focus of her campaign and supports keeping it legal up until “fetal viability.” Demings was an impeachment manager in the U.S. Senate trial against former President Donald Trump. Demings voted this year in the U.S. House for the largest tax increase in American history.
Marco Rubio (R) – Conservative
Marco Rubio has served in the U.S. Senate since 2011. He was the speaker of the Florida House from 2006 to 2008. Rubio says he is 100 percent “pro-life.” He supported a proposed 15-week nationwide abortion ban. Rubio voted this year in the Senate against the largest tax increase in American history.
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Representative, District 1
Matt Gaetz (R) – Leans Conservative
Rebekah Jones (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 2
Neal Dunn (R) – Conservative
Al Lawson (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 3
Kat Cammack (R) – Leans Conservative
Danielle Hawk (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 4
Aaron Bean (R) – Conservative
LaShonda Holloway (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 5
John H. Rutherford (R) - Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 6
Joe Hannoush (L) – Moderate
Michael Waltz (R) – Leans Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 7
Karen Green (D) – Liberal
Cory Mills (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 8
Bill Posey (R) – Conservative
Joanne Terry (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 9
Scotty Moore (R) – Conservative
Darren Soto (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 10
Maxwell Alejandro Frost (D) – Liberal
Calvin B. Wimbish (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 11
Shante Munns (D) – Liberal
Daniel Webster (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 12
Gus Michael Bilirakis (R) – Conservative
Kimberly Walker (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 13
Anna Paulina Luna (R) – Conservative
Eric Lynn (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 14
Kathy Castor (D) – Liberal
James Judge (R) – Leans Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 15
Alan Cohn (D) – Liberal
Laurel Lee (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 16
Vern Buchanan (R) – Leans Conservative
Jan Schneider (D) – Leans Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 17
Andrea Doria Kale (D) – Liberal
Greg Steube (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 18
Scott Franklin (R) – Leans Conservative
Keith Hayden Jr. (no party affiliation) – Leans Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 19
Cindy Lyn Banyai (D) – Liberal
Byron Donalds (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 20
Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick (D) – Liberal
Drew-Montez Clark (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 22
Lois Frankel (D) – Liberal
Dan Franzese (R) – Conservative
U.S. Representative, District 23
Joe Budd (R) – Conservative
Jared E. Moskowitz (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 24
Jesus G. Navarro (R) – Conservative
Frederica Wilson (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 25
Carla Spalding (R) – Leans Conservative
Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 26
Mario Diaz-Balart (R) – Leans Conservative
Christine Olivo (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 27
Maria Elvira Salazar (R) – Conservative
Annette Taddeo (D) – Liberal
U.S. Representative, District 28
Robert Asencio (D) – Liberal
Carlos A. Gimenez (R) – Moderate
DOES FLORIDA REQUIRE ID TO VOTE?
Yes. A current and valid ID with a photo and signature is required. One of the following is acceptable:
Florida driver’s license
Florida identification card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
United States passport
Debit or credit card (with photo)
Retirement center identification
Neighborhood association identification
Public assistance identification
Veteran health identification card issued by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs
License to carry a concealed weapon or firearm issued pursuant to s. 790.06
Employee identification card issued by any branch, department, agency, or entity of the Federal Government, the state, a county, or municipality.
What if you don’t have a valid ID? In that case, you can cast a provisional ballot, which will be counted if you are eligible to vote, you voted in the correct precinct, and your signature matches the one on file with the Supervisor of Elections.
HOW CAN I CHECK MY VOTER REGISTRATION?
You can check to make sure that you’re still registered and verify that the information is correct here. Counties may now purge voter rolls yearly, so check your registration well in advance before the voting deadlines.
WHAT TIME ARE THE POLLS OPEN?
The polls are open on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in whatever time zone you live in. Any voters in line at 7 p.m. will still be permitted to cast a ballot, no matter how long it takes.
HOW DO I FIND MY POLLING PLACE?
Your polling place is on your voter registration card, or you can look it up on your county’s Supervisor of Elections website. Here’s how to find yours.