Candidate Q&A: Mike Zhao, Florida State Representative District 45 (REP)

Read our exclusive conversation with Mike Zhao, Republican candidate for Florida State Representative District 45.

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Editor's note: Candidates responses have not been edited for grammar and are presented as received.

City/town of residence: Winter Garden
Family: spouse, children, etc. Lives with my wife Wendy Li. Have two adult children.
Education: MBA
Qualifications: 1. A Communism Survivor who cherish the American Dream. 2. A nationally-recognized conservative leader fighting against socialism, Critical Race Theory and race-based affirmative action. Featured by the Wall Street Journal in 2015 and Washington Examiner in 2021. Worked with the Trump Administration and changed the federal policy on college admission. 3. Former Director of Global Planning at Siemens Energy.

In a crowded primary race, what are the key differences between you and your opponents?
I believe most candidates have promised to support Governor DeSantis and to be a conservative. What set me apart is my proven conservative records and my outstanding business experience.

• I survived communist China’s Cultural Revolution and achieved my American Dream, started from $200. I have a deep appreciation of the American freedom.

• I have proven conservative leadership record. I have become a nationally-recognized conservative leader fighting against socialism, Critical Race Theory and race-based affirmative action. I was featured by the Wall Street Journal in 2015 and Washington Examiner in 2021. I worked with the Trump Administration and changed the federal policy on college admission.

• I am former Director of Global Planning at Siemens Energy with over 20 years of business leadership and problem-solving experience from Corporate America.

No other candidate has my experience nor conservative records..

What are the values and morals that have guided your life, and how will use them as District 45 representative?
Defend America's founding principles and the American Dream. I will always protect an individual's life, freedom, property; the free market system; rule of law; checks and balances; freedom of speech; equal opportunity and meritocracy. I will apply these principles as District 45 representative.

What are the three most pressing issues facing our state today, and how will you address them?
The first is rising gas price. I will use my over 20 years of energy industry experience to help fight against Biden’ radical energy policy by developing American own energy resources, including clean fossil energy.

The second is the high inflation and supply chain constraint. I plan to use my business experience to help address the supply constraint and other economic issues, therefore, helping reduce inflation.

The third is the affordable housing crises. I will use my over 13 years of housing experiences as a small business owner to initiate strategic planning for Florida’s housing development based on 10 year, 20 year forecast of population growth. In addition, I will make sure the proper funding and use of the affordable housing fund, the Sadowski Fund.

The fourth is the increasing transportation constraint. I plan to allocate sufficient funds and use my over 20 years of strategic planning skills to help Central Florida to address this issue proactively. I plan to cut the red tapes of transportation permit especially lengthy environment review. We also need to hold the contractor responsible to ensure our road will be built on time and with good quality.

The fifth is the rising property insurance. I plan to eliminate its root cause--the lawsuit abuse, to reduce the property insurance.

In recent weeks, District 45 voters have received several negative campaign flyers about candidates in this race. What is your opinion on this campaign tactic?
I think all candidates should present their visions and records to voters, as the primary way to win the election. That’s exactly what I have been doing. I am strongly against some candidate’s use of misleading or distorted facts to smear opponents.

However, if any candidate has serious flaws, corruption or other major issues, the voters should have rights to know that. We do not want to elect a flawed Republican candidate in the Primary Election, but lose to Democrats in General Election.

What is your plan to foster communication with District 45 constituents?
I have been using TV ad, mailers to communicate with voters indirectly. I als visiting voters at their doors to introduce myself and listen to their concerns.

As District 45 representative, describe how you will work across the aisle.
I will focus on finding solutions to help Central Floridians when working at Tallahassee. If we need Democrat’s help to address issues, I will not hesitate to reach out to them.  However. I will always stick to America’s founding principles and our constitutions, without any compromise of these core principle when cooperating with them.

Recent state bills will have an effect on Florida’s public-education system and its curriculum. What is your position on some of these changes?
As a survivor of communist China’s Cultural Revolution, I applaud Governor DeSantis’ leadership in rooting out Marxist indoctrination in Florida. When I go to the Florida House, I will make sure our education system focus on providing career and life skill to our children, not engaging any political indoctrination nor sexual grooming.  

What is your opinion on the dissolution of the Reedy Creek Improvement District?
First, I strongly support Governor DeSantis’ fight against Disney, the woke corporation’s support of grooming our young children. In the meantime, I will make sure Disney, not taxpayers in my district will pay its infrastructure needs. No tax increase for my constituents. Third, I will plan to use my business negotiations skills to pressure Disney to refocus its business back to pro-family entertainment, not supporting woke culture. In this way, Florida and Disney can achieve win-win.

If elected, what would you like to have accomplished after your first term as District 45 representative?
First, supporting legislature to help fight the five challenges I listed in your #3.

Second, introduce education related legislation to align Florida education for the 21st century job market needs, and provide life-skill education to Florida middle schooler and high-schoolers to teach them how to manage their money, develop social skills, reject crime and drug abuse.    



Michael Eng

As a child, Editor and Publisher Michael Eng collected front pages of the Kansas City Star during Operation Desert Storm, so it was a foregone conclusion that he would pursue a career in journalism. He holds a journalism degree from the University of Missouri — Columbia School of Journalism. When he’s not working, you can find him spending time with his wife and three children, or playing drums around town. He’s also a sucker for dad jokes.

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