The political arm of the Florida Medical Association on Tuesday endorsed Republican Fred Hawkins in the race to succeed Rep. Mike La Rosa in House District 42.
“The FMA PAC is proud to endorse Osceola County Commissioner Fred Hawkins in his campaign to represent House District 42 in the Florida Legislature. His longtime civic and community service allows for a seamless transition to address statewide issues and challenges in our state capitol,” said FMA PAC President Dr. Doug Murphy.
Hawkins said, “It is an honor to have the endorsement of the Florida Medical Association. The necessity for quality health care in Florida has never been more important. I stand in support of our brave physicians on the frontlines healing Floridians during this global pandemic.”
Hawkins is one of four Republicans running for the seat, which covers much of Osceola County and a piece of northeastern Polk County.
He faces Dianna Liebnitzky, Gary Scott and Benny Valentin in the Aug. 18 primary race.
As of June 26, Hawkins was far out in front in the money race with nearly $200,000 raised and $118,000 in the bank. Liebnitzky is a distant No. 2 with just $3,600 raised and $11,000 in candidate loans.
The winner of the primary race will go up against Democratic nominee Barbara Cady in the November general election.
Cady is running for HD 42 a second time after losing out to LaRosa by six points in the 2018 cycle. Through June 26, she had raised $34,000 for her campaign and had about $29,000 on hand.
The GOP nominee will a slight favorite on Election Day.
Despite the district being home to about 7,000 more Democrats than Republicans, La Rosa has held the seat for four terms. The closest of his races was in 2012, when he squeaked by with a one-point win. In 2014 bid, he won by 20 points and followed it up with a 10-point win in 2016.