SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. — With Election Day just over one month away, political party offices in Seminole County are gearing up to get voters to the polls.
What You Need To Know
- Republicans only have 1,289 more voters in Seminole County than Democrats do
- Party leaders eying U.S. House 7, State House and County Commission races
- RELATED: Trump Expected to Speak at Campaign Rally in Sanford This Week
Brittany Nethers has been the Seminole Democrats chairperson for two years.
Nethers said they’re working hard to make sure voters are engaged.
“We’re seeing lots of voter enthusiasm,” said Nethers.
There’s just as much excitement at the Republican Party’s headquarters.
Linda Trocine was an engineer at NASA before jumping into politics. Now, she’s working overtime to get Republicans to the polls.
“Enthusiasm is very high. Our yard signs, we’ve distributed thousands of them,” said Trocine.
Turning out the vote in Seminole County is extremely important. The margin of registered voters between Republicans and Democrats is very thin.
“Twelve-hundred eighty-nine more Republicans than Democrats and that is in a county of over 300,000 voters,” said Nethers.
Another third are registered as NPA and other party affiliations, according to the Seminole County Supervisors of Elections office.
In the 2016 Presidential Election, Seminole County went red, but not by much. President Trump won with a little over 1 percent of the vote. As county Republicans work to keep Trump in office, they also want to flip U.S. House District 7, which encompasses all of Seminole County and also includes Maitland, Winter Park, the UCF area and part of Orlando.
Seminole County did go for Murphy’s opponent in 2016, but Orange County is solidly blue and won Murphy the seat.
Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Winter Park, won the seat in 2016. Dr. Leo Valentin is a radiologist and the Republican challenging Murphy for the seat.
“There’s a lot of campaign activity on behalf of Dr. Valentin. Both in Seminole and Orange Counties,” said Trocine.
Murphy raised substantially more money than Valentin, but with the thin margin of registered voters between the parties, is the playing field leveled?
Nethers said no.
“She’s got lots of bipartisan support and we do feel confident that we are going to maintain that seat,” said Nethers.
“We are working hard for Dr. Valentin. Everyone who is supporting him is out there,” said Trocine.
Each party is looking at several other races. Among them, three state house seats and three county commission seats.
“When you look at who’s been elected to office in Seminole County for the last few decades, it’s overwhelmingly Republican leadership,” said Trocine.
“Democrats are on the verge of taking over Seminole County by the numbers and we are fighting hard every day to make sure that happens,” said Nethers.
Seminole County voters can start early voting on October 19.