Wes Hodge enters Orange Co. Supervisor of Elections race

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The former Orange County Democratic Party chair enters a crowded field.

An Orlando political party leader now wants to run Orange County’s elections.

Wes Hodge, former chair of the Orange County Democratic Party, launched a campaign Friday for Orange County Supervisor of Elections. He entered a crowded race to succeed retiring Supervisor or Elections Bill Cowles.

“I’ve always been defending your right to vote and that will continue as your next supervisor of elections,” Hodge said in a launch video.

The Democrat shot his announcement in Ocoee in front of a land marker honoring those killed in the Ocoee Massacre, prompted in 1920 when a Black man showed up to vote despite not paying a poll tax.

“It was here 103 years ago, that black Orange County residents were murdered when they tried to vote,” Hodge said. “In the 103 years that have followed, the Florida Legislature has continued to manipulate voting laws restricting how and where you can register to vote, rules regarding voting by mail, and even when and how to turn in your ballot.”

Hodge said he would be a champion for access to the right to vote if elected.

The push to hold public office comes after years of political activism and party involvement. Hodge served as chair of the Orange County Democratic Party from 2016 to 2022, and made a run in 2020 for Florida Democratic Party Chairman.

His tenure as party chair included controversial moments, including a Facebook exchange amid the George Floyd protests in 2020 where he appeared to endorse vandalism and property destruction during demonstrations.

But Hodge’s campaign video focused on work with voters, reminding them to keep requests for main-in ballots updated and helping with the process of curing signatures.

“It was me and my team of volunteers who contacted you and got you the forms necessary to make sure that your vote counted,” Hodge said. “I’ve always been defending your right to vote and that will continue as your next supervisor of elections.”

As supervisor, Hodge said he would push for more early voting sites and increasing efforts to pre-register students to vote when they are as young as 16 years old.

Hodge in the Democratic primary faces Orange County School Board member Karen Castor Dentel, Latino Justice legal services coordinator Ricardo Negron-Almodovar and Orange County Commissioner Mike Scott. Attorney Joseph Davis is the only Republican filed for the office.

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].


  • eva

    September 9, 2023 at 2:44 pm

    We only require a decent smart phone and an Internet connection, and we require a serious person to accomplish the task. ta For all students, young and old, graduates, and unemployed people, whether part-time or full-time.

  • eva

    September 9, 2023 at 2:45 pm


Comments are closed.


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