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Former Orlando police chief Val Demings

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Val Demings gets EMILY’S List backing

In her bid for Congress in the Orlando-based U.S. House District 10, former Orlando Police Chief Val Demings has won the backing of EMILY’S List, a progressive Democratic organization known for raising big money for candidates it endorses.

Demings is in a Democratic primary contest with three other candidates, including two women, state Sen. Geraldine Thompson and Orlando attorney Fatima Fahmy, plus Orlando businessman Bob Poe.

In addition, U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, who represented much of the constituency there for 23 years, is considering switching in from her Congressional District 5, which no longer includes anything in the Orlando area since Florida’s court-ordered redistricting this fall.

CD 10 has switched from being modestly Republican-leaning to being heavily Democratic-leaning. Consequently, incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster of Winter Garden also is considering switching districts, to Congressional District 11, which will contain much of his historic constituency.

Here’s what EMILY’S List President Stephanie Schriock said about Demings in the organization’s news release:

“Val Demings has dedicated her career to serving Florida women and families, and she will be a powerful advocate for increasing economic opportunity and for criminal justice reform in Congress. Val overcame tremendous hardship as a child, and she made history as the first woman to serve as Orlando Chief of Police. Under her effective leadership, violent crime dropped by 40 percent, and the police forged new partnerships with the community they serve. Val’s opponent is so extreme that he ran to the right of Paul Ryan for Speaker of the House, but a newly redrawn district makes this race a key pickup opportunity for Democrats. The EMILY’S List community of over three million members is thrilled to endorse Val Demings, a pro-choice champion for Florida women and families.”

EMILY’S List calls itself the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, has says it has raised over $400 million to support pro-choice Democratic female candidates.

Written By

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at scott@floridapolitics.com.

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