Susannah Randolph, former district director for U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, officially started her campaign for Florida’s 9th Congressional District Wednesday evening in downtown Orlando.
In front of a crowd of family, friends, and supporters, Randolph told her history of “fighting in the trenches” for progressive policies. She promoted a platform that revolved around equality, saying, “When we all stood together, we were all finally allowed to love who we love. We stood together and won that fight.”
Randolph also spoke of creating a better future for her daughter: “I want to show my beautiful daughter Hillary, that mommy is just as tough as the good old boys when it comes to fighting.”
Targets in Randolph’s stump speech included Gov. Rick Scott and presidential hopeful former Gov. Jeb Bush, whose policies she pledged to stop if sent to Washington.
In attendance were her husband, Orange County Tax Collector Scott Randolph; Osceola County Commissioner Michael Harford; outgoing Orange County Democratic Executive Committee Chairman Carlos Guillermo Smith, who told Florida Politics he is still neutral in the race; and former Colorado U.S. Rep. Pat Schroeder.
Randolph seeks the seat opened by Grayson’s run for U.S. Senate. Randolph was also his campaign adviser.
Other candidates in the Democratic primary include State Sen. Darren Soto; former State Rep. Ricardo Rangel; biotechnology entrepreneur and Grayson’s girlfriend, Dr. Dena Minning; and Valleri Crabtree.
On the Republican side, only Wayne Leibnitzky has file to run. Kissimmee Vice Mayor Wanda Rentas has said she intends to run, and former State Rep. Mike La Rosa is also weighing a potential bid.
The 9th Congressional District is a Democratic-leaning seat consisting of parts of Orange, Osceola, and Polk counties.