The Democrats Running For Congressional District 23

Voting sign on the walkway

Photo: Getty Images

There are six Democrats running in their primary for Congressional District 23.

Redistricting made this district essentially the one where Democrat Congressman Ted Deutch currently serves (CD-22), with just a few tweaks. With Deutch leaving the House to be chief executive officer of the American Jewish Committee, this open seat has attracted 15 total candidates, including these six Democrats, seven Republicans and two No Party Affiliated candidates.

Focusing on the Democrats, Allen Ellison was a candidate in the U.S. Senate Democrat Primary, but dropped out to run here instead. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.

"I'm also a cosmetologist, so that makes me a 'cosmo-politician' so not only can I write good policy to benefit the residents of District 23 but I can also give great haircuts and great styles."

Ellison says the American criminal justice system needs a complete overhaul, including the abolition of the death penalty. Gun safety and universal healthcare are among his other priorities.

Ellison says he is a "survivor of gun violence" and has some gun control ideas, which you can hear about in his interview.

Michaelangelo Hamilton is a poly-sci grad from FAU who's only 22 years old. He would be 23 at swearing-in if he made it that far, which is two years too young for Congress but points out that William Claiborne did it in 1797, so it's possible.

Hamilton has worked various retail jobs and operates a few small businesses focusing on Medicare Sales, real estate and a personal development and financial education company. He has also volunteered for some Democrats' campaigns.

Hamilton jumped into this race after the school shooting in Uvalde-Texas.

"I believe we should take a look at insurance on fire weapons. You know, since you have to have insurance on motor vehicles that could potentially harm someone, we should take a look at that also."

Ben Sorensen is the Vice Mayor of Fort Lauderdale and a small business owner, running a leadership training and executive coaching firm.

He's also a member of the U.S. Navy Reserve, stationed at U.S. Southern Command once a month for almost 15 years as an intelligence officer.

And while Sorensen says it's important to reach across the aisle...

"And I also think it's incredibly important for us as Democrats to hold true to our values of equality, of justice, of protecting women's rights, of having reasonable gun control...limiting assault weapons from our communities and our streets."

We didn't hear back from the other three candidates including Hava Holzhauer, Michael "Mike" Trout or Jared Moskowitz, the former director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management. Moskowitz is widely viewed as the frontrunner in this race.

We've previously heard from all seven of the candidates in the Republican Primary for CD-23 and you can listen here at the Election Spotlight page.


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