Ben Sorensen faces FEC fine, Jared Moskowitz crosses $1M in CD 23 race

Sorensen Moskowitz
Sorensen faces significant fines from the Federal Election Commission.

Federal fundraising reports for congressional races were due before 11:59 p.m. Friday, and Fort Lauderdale Vice Mayor Ben Sorensen failed to file his report by the deadline.

The missing report from Sorensen is the first the Democrat was required to file after joining the race for Florida’s 23rd Congressional District in April. He faces significant fines from the Federal Election Commission.

The FEC calculates fines for late filing based on financial activity, raising and spending, during the covered time period. Missing multiple filings increases those fines.

While Sorensen’s campaign website lists a few local endorsements, including nods from several municipal Commissioners in Broward County and his city’s firefighters union, he has not yet gained support from any official elected to a national, state or county office or a statewide or countywide organization.

Without the Q2 fundraising report, he is unable to prove any significant monetary support.

Sorensen told Florida Politics his campaign filed the report Saturday.

Democratic Broward Commissioner Jared Moskowitz, the presumptive front-runner in the race to replace outgoing U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch in CD 23, reported raising an additional $440,000 in contributions during last quarter.

That haul, plus $250,000 Moskowitz loaned to his campaign, brings the total amount he’s raised to $1 million since announcing his candidacy in early March.

Moving Broward Forward, a political action committee formed in May to back Moskowitz’s campaign, has amassed an additional $200,000.

Moskowitz has collected more than 100 endorsements from elected officials and organizations, including former Secretary of State and U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse, 29 state Senators, more than 50 currently elected local officials and a passel of local, state and national organizations.

Organizations supporting Moskowitz include the Communication Workers of America, SEIU Florida, Giffords PAC, Florida AFL-CIO, Florida State Lodge Fraternal Order of Police, League of Conservation Voters, Broward Teachers Union and Metro-Broward Professional Firefighters, among others.

Moskowitz’s sizable war chest, combined with his unmatched amassment of endorsements, puts him in a formidable position to win both the Democratic Primary and General Election.

All other candidates vying for the Democratic nomination in CD 23 filed fundraising reports on time. Former Anti-Defamation League leader Hava Holzhauer raised about $170,000 and spent $100,000, leaving just $70,000 cash on hand.

Allen Ellison, a perennial candidate from Sebring who in June shifted from running in the Democratic Primary for U.S. Senate against Val Demings, loaned his campaign more than $11,000 but raised no outside money. Entrepreneur Michaelangelo Hamilton, who may not be eligible for the election based on his age, raised $130 and loaned his campaign $10,740. After paying the $10,440 campaign qualifying fee, both men had less than $600 on hand as of June 30.

Former professional pianist and Central Florida Community Development Corporation Board member Mike Trout performed similarly, raising less than $1,000 and loaning his campaign enough money to cover the qualifying fee, which the FEC lists as unpaid.

The winning Democrat in the Primary contest will face the victor of a Republican Primary between Palm Beach County Republican Committeeman Joe Budd, retired chiropractor Steve Chess, lawyer Christy McLaughlin, candidate Myles Perrone, lawyer Jim Pruden, insurance broker Darlene Swaffer, Centennial Management Corp. President Lewis Swezy and lawyer Ira Weinstein.

No-party candidates Mark Napier and Christine Scott are also running.

The Primary Election is on Aug. 23, followed by the General Election Nov. 8.

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Editor’s note: This story was updated to correctly list Moskowitz’s endorsements, include a comment from Sorensen on his campaign fundraising report and clarify a description of his endorsements.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


One comment

  • Christine Scott

    July 17, 2022 at 1:32 pm

    There are more NPAs in D23 than Republicans. NPAs are solid and not interested in parties. You can ignore this fact, but the voters won’t.

Comments are closed.


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