Democrat State Rep. & Firefighter Faces Challenge From Republican Attorney

One of the many Florida House races on the ballot next month is the one for District 86 in Palm Beach County.

On top of being a State Representative, Democrat Matt Willhite is also a Palm Beach County firefighter and former Wellington Village council member.

He faces a challenge from Republican Susan Kufdakis Rivera, an immigration attorney who accuses Willhite of spending too much of his energy on national politics on social media.

"He tends to focus a lot on the national political scene. One would expect that their representative would be paying attention to what's going on at home. It would be better if a state or local representative could be more accessible at the local level."

The Incumbent says he's very focused on the locals.

"I've been in elected office for 12 years in this area and pretty involved. But I will tell you something that was mentioned on her website. (She) used a word in there that I've never been called in my life, and that's lazy. I am not lazy. I work each and everday as hard as I can for the people of District 86."

Willhite touts his work on 14 bills that were passed and signed into law during his two terms in the state House.

They include one that extends PTSD treatment for law enforcement officers and first responders placed in harm's way through their service.

Part of Rivera's platform also calls for supporting first responders through access to what she calls "valuable health care" and economic resources, among other things.

Hear from both candidates in the above audio players.

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Photo: Getty Images

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