FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 1st, 2015
Carlos Guillermo Smith
Carlos Guillermo Smith Launches Bid for FL House District 49
Party chairman & former aide declares candidacy and begins momentum towards Democratic victory
Orlando, FL - The chairman of the Orange County Democratic Party, Carlos Guillermo Smith, 34, filed paperwork and officially announced his candidacy Monday in the 2016 race for Florida House District 49. A longtime resident of the district and alumnus of the University of Central Florida, Carlos previously served as legislative aide to former Representatives Joe Saunders and Scott Randolph. House District 49 leans Democratic and is also known as the “UCF seat”, containing a younger population with a median age of 28 and an approximately 30% Hispanic electorate according to the 2010 census.
Carlos Guillermo Smith offered the following statement about his candidacy:
“The needs of working families in House District 49 have been ignored by Tallahassee for too long. We need someone from the community who has consistently fought for the issues most important to voters. Issues such as job creation, fully funded public education, and social and economic inequality. Last month’s decision by the House to walk off the job without passing a budget to expand access to affordable healthcare for 800,000 uninsured Floridians was a wake up call. We need new voices if we are going to govern this state in a responsible way, and I will be ready to do that from day one."
Former HD-49 Representative Joe Saunders offered the following statement:
“While public service may be in my future again someday, I’m confident that this year there is a candidate for District 49 who can pick up the torch and help to finish so much of the work we started. District 49 needs someone who represents the diversity of the district, has the capacity to bring people together and has the experience and skill to make change in a process that is ripe with challenges. I can’t think of a better person to take on those challenges than Carlos Guillermo Smith.”
The former chair of the Orange County Democratic Party and local community activist, Amy Mercado, who is herself a resident of House District 49 offered the following statement:
“We need a real fighter in Tallahassee will stand up for us and who has a proven record of getting things done. Carlos knows the issues and has always been there for our community when we needed him. We’d be lucky to call him our state representative.”
In his current role as Equality Florida’s public policy specialist, Carlos led the organization's effort to successfully kill two anti-LGBT bills given a fast track during 2015 session despite significant Republican majorities in the House and Senate.