Charlie Crist endorses Rita Harris over Daisy Morales in HD 44

Rita Harris
The Aug. 23 Primary Election will be open to all and the winner will be seated.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate and U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist is endorsing Rita Harris in House District 44, picking the challenger over an incumbent Democrat in the south-central Orange County election.

Crist’s endorsement of Harris, a longtime Orange County Democratic activist, comes as she runs against freshman incumbent Democratic state Rep. Daisy Morales.

There are no Republican or other candidates in HD 44, so the Aug. 23 Primary Election will be open to all voters. The winner between Harris and Morales will be elected.

Crist is not the first significant Democrat to have turned on Morales. The Democratic establishment is splitting on the race.

Morales won endorsement from Crist’s gubernatorial Democratic Primary Election rival, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, among other Democrats.

“Rita has been a strong champion for women’s reproductive health, her first job was with Planned Parenthood, that’s how I know she’ll fight for our values in Tallahassee. She’ll stand with me against bullies in the GOP leadership,” Crist said in a news release issued by Harris’ campaign.

The new HD 44 was carved from a western portion of Morales’ old House District 48 and the eastern portion of Democratic state Rep. Geraldine Thompson’s old House District 44. That created a district that consolidates the south-central Orange communities of Williamsburg, Meadow Woods, Hunters Creek, Southchase and Taft with the Dr. Phillips area to the west and part of Lake Nona to the east.

As with the old HD 48, the new HD 44 should be a safe district for Democrats for many years.

“This campaign has been about providing a voice to the challenges we face in Central Florida. I’m honored to receive Congressman Crist’s endorsement. Throughout his time in public service, he has consistently put people first before politics,” Harris said in the news release.

“As state Representative, I’ll work alongside him to restore women’s right to make decisions about our own bodies, repair the damage to our public education system, and address the affordability crisis Florida is facing.”

Harris’s prior Democratic endorsements have included nods from Ruth’s List Florida, Orange County Property Appraiser Amy Mercado, Orlando’s State Attorney Monique Worrell, Sen. Victor Torres of Orlando and Sen. Jason Pizzo of Miami.

Morales’ previous Democratic endorsements have included U.S. Rep. Darren Soto of Kissimmee, Rep. Kristen Arrington from neighboring House District 46, Rep. Susan Valdés of Tampa, and former Reps. Bruce Antone of Orlando and Rep. John Cortes of Kissimmee.

Scott Powers

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 [email protected].

One comment

  • A harris victim

    July 28, 2022 at 1:43 pm

    Just make sure you dont drop any f bombs at Harris. Otherwise she will call police and try to have you arrested. It doesnt matter why you drop those f bombs. It doesnt matter that she could be hurting bystanders. It doesnt matter if those bystanders are adults or underage children. Harris will do whatever she can order to advance herself. She has a trail of victims across the world.

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn