‘A crucial voice’: Equality Florida Action PAC backs Ashley Gantt in HD 109
Ashley Gantt posts another blockbuster month.

'In Miami-Dade, our diversity is our strength, and I will always fight to protect our beautiful LGBTQ community.'

The political arm of Equality Florida, a group advocating on behalf of the LGBTQ community, is endorsing Democratic Rep. Ashley Gantt as she faces a high-profile Primary challenge in House District 109.

“Equality Florida Action PAC is thrilled to endorse Ashley V. Gantt for her unwavering commitment to equality and justice,” said Stratton Pollitzer, Chair of Equality Florida Action PAC.

“We have witnessed unprecedented attacks on our LGBTQ community coming out of Tallahassee, and Ashley Gantt has been a crucial voice in the House pushing back on dangerous anti-LGBTQ rhetoric. We wholeheartedly endorse her for re-election, and we need more public servants like her in the Legislature.”

Gantt won the endorsement over Democratic Primary challengers James Bush III and Roy Hardemon. The two are running to oust Gantt in a Democratic Primary that will decide the HD 109 race.

“I am deeply honored to receive the endorsement of Equality Florida Action PAC, an organization at the forefront of the fight for LGBTQ rights,” Gantt said. “This recognition reinforces our shared commitment to ensuring that every individual can live freely and authentically without fear of discrimination. In Miami-Dade, our diversity is our strength, and I will always fight to protect our beautiful LGBTQ community.”

Both of Gantt’s opponents are former members of the House. Gantt defeated Bush last cycle, ousting the incumbent to secure the HD 109 seat. Now, he’s seeking to turn the tables.

Hardemon, meanwhile, got booted from the House in 2018 after losing a Democratic Primary contest to now-Democratic Rep. Dotie Joseph in House District 108. He sought to regain that seat in 2020 and 2022 but lost to Joseph each time by more than 25 points. Seeing the writing on the wall, he has swapped this cycle to pursue the HD 109 seat and try his luck against Gantt.

Hardemon, however, doesn’t appear to be running a serious campaign. He has filed no financial reports since the end of 2023. He has incurred several letters from the Division of Elections warning him of his failure to file timely reports, potentially leaving him open to sanction.

The incumbent, meanwhile, is handily outraising Bush. Gantt has brought in just under $47,000 for her re-election bid, compared to less than $7,000 for Bush.

The Democratic Primary will take place on Aug. 20. Because no other candidates have filed in the contest, the Primary will be open to all voters, and the winner will be declared the winner in HD 109.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected].

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