With the qualification period now complete for this year’s political candidates, the races for local and state office are now clear. Earlier in the week we published the County Commission, Kissimmee City Commission and constitutional offices that will be up for grabs starting in the Aug. 18 primary election.
Here is a look at the races for those who want to serve Osceola County in Tallahassee — or Washington, D.C.
State House, District 39: The district that includes Celebration, Four Corners and parts of Polk County features incumbent Republican Josie Tomkow against Democrat challenger Chris Cause.
State House, District 42: Incumbent Republican Mike La Rosa has served eight years, the limit. Republicans Benny Valentin, who has run for the seat before, Gary Scott, Dianna Liebnitzky and Fred Hawkins, who’s giving up a County Commission seat to run, vie in the August primary. The winner will face Democrat Barbara Cady, who has also run for this seat before, and No Party Affiliation candidate Leroy Sanchez.
State House, District 43: An eclectic group of six Democrats have lined up to replace John Cortes, who is running for Osceola County Clerk of Court. They are: Hispanic outreach political director Alex Barrio, businessman and former Kissimmee City Commission candidate Andrew Jeng, former Kissimmee councilman Carlos Irizarry, Ricardo Rangel, who held this seat 2012-14, Tamika Lyles, President of the Osceola County Democratic Black Caucus and Vice-President for the Osceola County Democratic Veteran’s Caucus, and Kristen Arrington, a marketing and consulting firm owner who has worked on other local campaigns and now becomes a candidate.
State Senate, District 15: Incumbent Democrat Victor Torres won the seat in 2016 after two terms in the State House, and waits until November to face Republican Louis Minnis and Mike James, running with no party affiliation.
U.S. House, District 9: U.S. Representative Darren Soto has no Democratic primary. He will wait for Nov. 3 to face the winner of a Republican primary contested between Jose Castillo, William P. “Bill” Olson, Sergio Ortiz and Christopher Wright.