Democrat Carlos Guillermo Smith has quickly amassed five figures in donations for his state Senate campaign.
The former state Representative announced he raised more than $80,000 in the three weeks after announcing his candidacy in Senate District 17.
“I am deeply grateful for the outpouring of support from grassroots donors across Florida and the country who have invested in our campaign for a safer, brighter Central Florida. Our campaign is powered by people, not powerful corporate interests, and our fundraising numbers prove it,” the Orlando Democrat said.
“Tallahassee insiders are already playing their usual games to try to derail our people-powered movement. They think they can outspend us, but they can’t outwork us. We will never stop fighting for what’s right, and we will not let the old guard of Tallahassee politics stand in the way of progress for our communities.”
To date, Smith faces no competition in the Democratic-leaning district. He is running to succeed Sen. Linda Stewart, a Democrat who is termed out.
Smith served six years in the Florida House, but lost a bid for a fourth term to Republican challenger Susan Plasencia in November.
As he runs for a seat in the upper chamber, Smith said he’s focusing on grassroots support. His campaign noted 571 contributions to the campaign were for $200 or less.
“Carlos’ record of fighting for equality and progressive values has clearly resonated with voters, donors, and working families.” said Shayne Cheshire, Smith’s fundraiser.
“By this time last cycle our current coalition of 12 Senators had received 49 grassroots contributions combined, while Carlos has received 571 in three weeks. This early fundraising success shows that our campaign has the momentum and support needed to win next year.”
Smith has quickly rallied Democratic leaders in the Legislature and the Orlando area behind his campaign. He boasts endorsements from U.S. Rep. Maxwell Alejandro Frost, state Sens. Lori Berman, Shevrin Jones, Geraldine Thompson and Victor Torres, and state Reps. LaVon Bracy Davis, Anna Eskamani, Rita Harris and Johanna López.