Personal financial disclosure statements for candidates in Florida’s 9th Congressional District race show the professional interests of Democratic lawyer Darren Soto and Republican tool business owner Wayne Liebnitzky say it all.

Soto, a state senator from Orlando, lists no assets other than his and his wife’s retirement accounts and his law practice, Darren Soto Law Office, which he valued at somewhere between $15,000 and $50,000. With three mortgages adding up to as much as $350,000, and and student loans somewhere between $50,000 and $100,000, his net worth is somewhere between $35,000 and a debt of $389,000. His state financial disclosures indicate a net worth of $55,000, according to his campaign.

Soto lists his income last year as $55,000 from his law practice, $27,500 from his legislative salary and his wife’s salary of $56,000 from Orange County Public Schools, for a total of $138,500.

He also lists his legal clients who provided at least $5,000 apiece to his income, requiring their disclosure for potential conflicts of interest. They include Hakh Investments of Kissimmee, Poincana Milling Complex of Kissimmee, and several individuals. [This article previously reported that the clients included Victor Torres of Orlando. Soto’s campaign responded that the individual is not the state representative.]

Liebnitzky, a data systems engineer whose Monkey Tools LLC holds several MAC Tools franchises for automotive tools, listed his tool business assets as worth somewhere between $250,000 and $500,000. He also listed some retirement accounts and savings, a boat and a car with modest values, bringing his assets total to $350,000 and $825,000. The only liability he listed was for $15,000 to $50,000 worth of tools, bringing his net worth to somewhere between $300,000 and $810,000.

He listed his income as a $42,000 salary from Up Systems, $32,000 from his tool business, and his wife’s $128,000 salary at Florida Hospital, for a total of $202,000.

About The Author

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

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