The special election in Senate District 40 will go on as planned on Tuesday, September 26 despite calls from Democratic-leaning groups for a delay.
The district is in Miami-Dade County, where many residents lost power during Hurricane Irma.
Florida Democratic Party Chair Stephen Bittel and groups like Common Cause Florida and the League of Women Voters of Florida wrote Governor Rick Scott, asking to push the election back a couple of weeks. They want residents to have more time to recover from Hurricane Irma.
But Miami-Dade Deputy Elections Supervisor Suzy Trutie says early voting sites were in good shape after the storm, so the elections department got approval from the Governor’s Office to keep the original date.
“We did an assessment to make sure that all of the sites had power and phone and accessibility,” said Trutie. “Once we were able to analyze all of our operations, we provided those updates to the Florida Division of Elections and the mayor's office.”
Trutie said the county expects to see a typical number of voters for Tuesday’s election.
“Special elections traditionally in our community have had a 10 to 15 percent turnout,” Trutie said. “For the special primary, we had a 12 percent turnout. So we're optimistic that we're going to fall within our historical range of 10 to 15 percent voter turnout.”
Early voting sites opened on September 16 and will be open through this Sunday, September 24.
The candidates are Democrat Annette Taddeo, Republican Jose Felix Diaz, and NPA Christian Schlaerth.
Voters will replace Senator Frank Artiles, who resigned in April after making derogatory comments to a female senator at a Tallahassee bar.
Miami-Dade voters will also cast ballots in state House District 116 for the seat left vacant when Rep. Jose Felix Diaz resigned to run for state Senate, as well as a municipal election in Virginia Gardens.