Patrick Henry narrowly outraises Elizabeth Fetterhoff in latest reporting period
Patrick Henry, Elizabeth Fetterhoff..

Incumbent still holds major cash advantage.

Former Rep. Patrick Henry out-raised Republican Rep. Elizabeth Fetterhoff in the latest fundraising period for the House District 26 rematch. But, he still lags in total cash.

The Daytona Beach Democrat pulled in $12,711 between Aug. 22 and September 4. That’s a little bit more than the $12,275 raised by the GOP incumbent over the same time.

But Fetterhoff, over the past two years, raised $196,562 and went into the Labor Day weekend with $139,393 cash on hand. Henry has pulled in $79,317 and has $44,434 in the bank. Still, he feels good about his odds at retaking a seat he lost to Fetterhoff by a razor thin 61-vote margin in 2018.

“I’m no longer the incumbent,” Henry acknowledges. “But I expect this election to be as close as the last one, but hope to come up on the side of the winner.”

In a presidential year, Henry knows the region will depend on Democrats turning out more votes than came out before. He notes 5,000 fewer Democrats voted in 2018 in the district than did in 2016, when he won the seat with 53% over Republican Michael Cantu.

In particular, Henry would like to see Black voters turn out in force this year. Participation by that Demographic was down around 10% in the primary, but he hopes with the presidential election on the ballot in November, that comes in a bit higher.

Fetterhoff did not return calls for comment, but has enjoyed financial and institutional support this cycle. That includes backing from the Florida Chamber of Commerce, who also endorsed her bid to unseat Henry two years ago.

The Republican Party of Florida provided another $3,500 worth of in-kind support for Fetterhoff just in the last period, providing campaign staff to the incumbent. The Florida Democratic Party, meanwhile, provided more than $2,600 in staff support to Henry over the same time.

Henry also picked up support from former Attorney General Eric Holder’s National Democratic Redistricting Committee, which aims to help Democrats win legislative seats ahead of a reapportionment process after the 2020 Census.

“We understand that if we don’t win this seat, it will be redistricted to be more in their favor,” Henry said. “And there is no Democrat representative in the county area around this district.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


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