George Soros, a Washington D.C. billionaire, appears to be spending a lot of money to influence the Democratic primary race for Orange-Osceola County state attorney.
- State attorney race between Aramis Ayala and Jeff Ashton
- Ayala got over $400,000 from a PAC connected to George Soros
On Thursday, incumbent State Attorney Jeff Ashton, and his newly-funded opponent, Aramis Ayala, had a lot to say about this new wave of campaign dollars now flowing.
“The office of the state attorney is not for sale,” Ashton said.
Just last week, hundreds of thousands of dollars popped up in federal filings, all from the Florida Safety and Justice PAC, paying for advertisements for Ayala.
“Of course I welcome it. At the end of the day, I am running to become the next state attorney,” Ayala said.
The political action committee is connected to the liberal billionaire Soros, who funded Democratic campaigns in the past. Already, the PAC has purchased $444,000 in ads for Ayala.
“If she is going to be successful in this race, it is because she bought it for $1 million,” Ashton said.
Ashton, who at this point has just a little more than $70,000 invested in his campaign, said the hundreds of thousands invested in Ayala's campaign comes with a price.
“We can all agree we are sick and tired of political billionaires shoving their political views down our throats,” Ashton said.
He went as far as saying the timing of the PAC's involvement is suspicious and should be investigated. For now, the Florida Election Commission couldn’t admit or deny whether an investigation is underway.
Ayala says she’s never met the billionaire behind the funds and doesn’t know anything about the PAC.
“I am not a puppet, never have been a puppet and there is no one pulling my strings. I made the independent decision to run for state attorney because I want the job,” Ayala said.
The two go head to head in Florida's Aug. 30 primary, and because all the candidates running are Democrats, that means in a few short weeks, the person who wins the primary election will only be up against a write-in candidate in November.