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State Rep. Daisy Morales Will Run in New House District 44

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) — Democratic State Representative Daisy Morales’ campaign announced today in a press release that she will seek her second term in the newly drawn Florida House District 44, after the Florida Legislature split District 48 into Districts 43 and 44 (see below).

Current District 44 incumbent State Rep. Geraldine Thompson, a Democrat, will not run for re-election. She is instead running for State Senate District 11. Other District 44 candidates include Republican Janet Frevola and Democrat Jennifer Rita Harris.

Image: Florida House of Representatives

Image: Florida House of Representatives

 

Morales’ on Her History of Winning

“I’m excited to enter into the 2022 elections with a history of winning both the State House and countywide office by landslides for the last eight years,” states Rep. Morales in the press release. “As a resident of Orange County for nearly 35 years, a former U.S. government employee, military mom, community advocate, and longtime elected official, I’ve built strong relationships of trust and confidence with Orange County voters.

“My previous Democratic and Republican opponents, along with their cash cow supporters and big name endorsements, always underestimated the bond I have with the voters to their detriment, ending in shocking defeats. None of their efforts mattered to the voters who elected me.”

 

Fighting the COVID-19 Crisis

The campaign highlights Rep. Morales’ work in getting the community vaccinated and holding multiple food distribution events to support families hardest hit by the pandemic. For as long as she’s been in public office, Rep. Morales has been a community mainstay, constantly active and distributing resources.

Morales states in a campaign statement: “We’re bouncing back from COVID-19 here in Florida, and I’ve consistently worked hard with state agencies and community partners to help provide Floridians with the supplies and vaccinations they need to recover from the pandemic’s impact.

“That includes food distribution events for the communities hardest hit by the pandemic, helping residents secure rental assistance and addressing unemployment issues by helping them file unemployment claims and by hosting job fairs in my district.”

The press release also notes Rep. Morales’ initiative in her district’s COVID-19 response, calling on the Governor  Ron DeSantis to set up 24-hour vaccination sites there. “I’m familiar with what resources are needed at the federal, state and local levels to address challenges or crises in the district,” Morales said in her campaign statement.

Photo: State Representative Daisy Morales (Facebook) / Foto: Representante estatal Daisy Morales (Facebook)

Photo: State Representative Daisy Morales (Facebook) / Foto: Representante estatal Daisy Morales (Facebook)

 

Most Bills Sponsored and Cosponsored in the House

Rep. Morales is on track to have over 100 bills she has sponsored and cosponsored signed into law by the governor during her first term, a surprising feat for a freshman Democrat lawmaker in a Republican-controlled House.

“I put bipartisanship first to get things done for District 48 constituents and the people of Florida,” Morales said. “I voted to pass historic balanced state budgets during the 2021 and 2022 Legislative Sessions.”

Additionally, she also published two House Resolutions. House Resolution 8053 designated June 25, 2021 as World Vitiligo Day in Florida, and House Resolution 8069 recognizes April 2, 2022 as Puerto Rican Heritage Day across Florida, a historic first for the state. She also voted for House Resolution 1597 condemning Russia’s war on Ukraine.

 

Morales Explains Why She’s the Best Candidate

District 44 voters will get a current State Representative with a success record of passing legislation into law and getting appropriations projects added into the State budget. The tourism industry in the district, including Orlando International Airport, hotel and lodging, theme parks, the Orange County Convention Center, restaurants and small businesses, will have a real fighter at the state capitol.

“I’ve represented voters before from the Lake Nona community to the Dr. Phillips community when I served six years as an elected Supervisor on the Orange County Soil & Water Conservation District Board,” said Morales. “District 44 is still a major part of my current District 48, and I’m looking forward to serving those residents again.”

 

Communities in District 44

District 44 includes Hunters Creek, Taft, Meadow Woods, the Florida Mall area, Sky Lake and Southchase from the previous District 48. The redraw adds Doctor Phillips, Universal Orlando and SeaWorld areas (Williamsburg) and the northern portion of Lake Nona.

 

Morales on Supporting Lake Nona and the Tourism Industry

State Rep. Daisy Morales tours AdventHealth's COVID-19 vaccination site near Orlando International Airport. She talks with student nurses with University of Central Florida (UCF) College of Nursing, February 21, 2021. Florida National News photo.

State Rep. Daisy Morales tours AdventHealth’s COVID-19 vaccination site near Orlando International Airport. She talks with student nurses with University of Central Florida (UCF) College of Nursing, February 21, 2021. Florida National News photo.

The press release highlights Rep. Morales’ sponsored and cosponsored bills and appropriations projects for the Lake Nona area and the Orange County tourism industry.

  • Tourism Marketing – $50 million in funding for Visit Florida, the state’s marketing site and organization, and extend its sunset date to October 2031 (HB 489). Senate companion bill SB 434 awaits the governor’s signature.
  • Nearly $500,000 for Technical Assistance for Minority Owned Businesses (HB 2037)
  • Millions for UCF’s Nursing Building (HB 3841) in Lake Nona’s Medical City. Rep. Morales cosponsored this bill after meeting with UCF nurses from her district during the COVID-19 pandemic and learning more about UCF’s Nursing program.
  • During the 2021 Legislative Session, she also cosponsored the Autonomous Vehicles bill (CS/CS/HB 1289), authorizing the use of low-speed autonomous vehicles on certain roads, including BEEP autonomous vehicles in Lake Nona.
State Rep. Daisy Morales (right) speaks with BEEP Chief Marketing Officer Racquel Asa during the grand opening of BEEP's world headquarters in Lake Nona Wednesday, July 21, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

State Rep. Daisy Morales (right) speaks with BEEP Chief Marketing Officer Racquel Asa during the grand opening of BEEP’s world headquarters in Lake Nona Wednesday, July 21, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Morales on Endorsing a Candidate in House District 43

According to the press release, despite choosing to run in District 44, Rep. Morales is still committed to her constituents in the newly drawn District 43. “I will endorse a District 43 candidate that shares my common sense approach and passion for the community, and will work with me in Tallahassee.”

Voters make their first decision in the August 23rd primary election, then make their ultimate decision in the general election November 8, 2022.

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Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News and host of the FNN Politics & Power Series, which simulcasts to Facebook and YouTube on Thursdays. | mellissa.thomas@floridanationalnews.com

 

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