WINTER GARDEN — Surrounded by friends, family members and West Orange constituents, U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster celebrated his re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives during his election party Nov. 4, at the Bella Room, in Winter Garden.
Webster, a Republican, soundly defeated Democrat Michael McKenna. Webster received 58,030 (58.96%) votes, while McKenna received 40,215 (40.86%) votes.
“I am pleased to earn the trust of Central Florida voters and am grateful for the opportunity to represent them in Congress,” Webster said. “The status quo in Washington is unacceptable, and Americans deserve better. I will continue to fight for a balanced budget, a healthier economy, and an efficient and effective government for America’s future.”
Webster was first elected to the House in 2010 and served on the House Committee on Rules and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Before Washington, he served from 1980 to 2008 in the Florida Legislature. He was both speaker of the Florida House and majority leader of the Florida Senate.
In the next four years, Webster said he will continue working on government spending.
“I think our government in Washington, D.C., is broken in that we’re spending more money than we have,” he said. “We’re on a path to balance — we’re not there yet — but we have made progress the last four years. We’ve gone from borrowing $1.5 trillion down to this last year … borrowing $483 (billion). I want to keep that going. Four-hundred-eighty-three billion is a lot better than $1.5 trillion, but it’s not good enough. So, we went from borrowing 40 cents on the dollar to 16 cents on the dollar. I want to get it down to zero. Until we do that, we’re still going to be broken.”
He also said transportation will remain an important topic for Floridians.
“The major issue — I’m on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee — we have to reauthorize a transportation bill, which, for us in Florida, we have to have people coming here,” he said. “That’s our mainstay, so transportation is huge. So, reauthorizing that bill for, hopefully, six years, funding the federal portion of the transportation issues in this state would be a major win for Florida.”
Webster and his wife, Sandy, have six children and eight grandchildren.
FLORIDA SENATE DISTRICT 12
Incumbent state Sen. Geraldine Thompson (D) retained her District 12 over Republican challenger Edward DeAguilera.
Thompson received 65,956 votes (62.81%), compared to DeAguilera’s 39,046 votes (37.19%).
In addition to her previous term as a state senator, Thompson also served as a state representative.
FLORIDA HOUSE DISTRICT 44
Of West Orange’s four districts, only District 44 was contested.
District 44 incumbent, state Rep. Eric Eisnaugle, handily defeated his Republican challenger Stephen Facella in the August primary and cruised to victory over independent candidate Matthew Falconer.
Eisnaugle received 28,039 votes (64.58%); Falconer received 15,379 votes (35.42%).
ORANGE COUNTY COMMISSION DISTRICT 2
Four-term Republican state Rep. Bryan Nelson bested Democrat Alvin Moore in the race for the District 2 seat on the Orange County Commission.
Nelson received 27,252 votes (59%), while Moore received 18,961 (41%). Nelson replaces longtime Commissioner Fred Brummer.
ORANGE COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD DISTRICT 3
In a runoff election for Orange County School Board District 3, Linda Kobert narrowly defeated opponent Regina Hellinger.
Kobert received 18,380 votes (53.33%), while Hellinger received 16,084 (46.67%).
Kobert takes over for Rick Roach, who has served on the School Board since 1998.
SCHOOL BOARD AD VALOREM MILLAGE
Orange County voters overwhelmingly supported a special referendum to renew ad valorem millage that benefits Orange County Public Schools.
The referendum received 216,511 (76.6%) votes of approval, compared to 66,314 (23.4%) who opposed.