South Florida voters make picks in three state legislative contests

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Voters made their picks Tuesday in three Florida state legislative districts, deciding who they want to represent parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties.

There’s a big catch: At least two — and maybe all three — of the people selected won’t take office until after the annual 60-day legislative session that started Tuesday in Tallahassee.

The most prominent winner Tuesday was Rosalind Osgood, former chairwoman and currently a member of the Broward School Board.

Dr. Rosalind Osgood is congratulated in her Fort Lauderdale home by campaign worker Chelsea Goins on election night, Tuesday, January 11, 2022. T

Dr. Rosalind Osgood is congratulated in her Fort Lauderdale home by campaign worker Chelsea Goins on election night, Tuesday, January 11, 2022. T (Mike Stocker / South Florida Sun Sentinel)

She defeated Terry Ann Williams Edden in the Democratic primary in Broward’s 33rd state Senate district. Though Osgood faces a Republican candidate in the March 8 special general election, the 33rd District is so Democratic that she’s the overwhelming favorite to win the seat.

“I feel excited. I feel very humble that the community would trust me in this way,” Osgood said Tuesday night.

On Wednesday, Osgood said, she’d start concentrating on the March general election campaign. “I take every election seriously. I take nothing for granted. I’m going to work hard,” she said.

Voting also took place in two state House of Representatives districts.

94th District, Broward. Four candidates were on the ballot in the universal primary in the Broward County 94th state House District. Candidates were Daryl Campbell, Josephus “JoJo” Eggelletion III, Rod Kemp and Elijah Manley.

With all precincts reporting, Campbell had 4,816 votes, about 40% of those cast. Eggelletion had 3,511, while Kemp had 700 and Manley had 3,032.

Campbell, 35, was incumbent state representative Bobby DuBose’s campaign manager in 2020 and his legislative assistant during the 2021 annual session.

Clockwise from top left, candidates in the special primary in the Florida House of Representatives 94th District are are Daryl Campbell, Josephus Eggelletion III, Elijah Manley and Roderick Kemp.

Clockwise from top left, candidates in the special primary in the Florida House of Representatives 94th District are are Daryl Campbell, Josephus Eggelletion III, Elijah Manley and Roderick Kemp. (Courtesy)

Eggelletion, 47, comes from a well-known political family. His late father, Josephus Eggelletion was a member of the Broward County Commission and the Florida House after previous service as a Lauderdale Lakes city councilman. He resigned the County Commission in 2009 after pleading guilty in a federal corruption investigation.

Manley, 23, was often homeless while growing up. An outspoken progressive who challenged DuBose in the August 2020 primary, Manley also ran for a countywide School Board seat in 2018.

Eggelletion and Manley both had endorsements from long lists of elected officials.

Kemp, 65, has been active in helping to restore voting rights for felons who have served their sentences and has been a political fundraiser.

The district includes northwest Fort Lauderdale and parts of Wilton Manors, Oakland Park, Lauderhill, Lauderdale Lakes and Plantation.

All were Democrats. But because no one from any other party came forward to run, the primary was open to all registered voters.

88th District, Palm Beach County. Jervonte “Tae” Edmonds and Clarence “Chief” Williams were the Democratic candidates.

Edmonds won the primary will face Republican Guarina Torres in the March 8 special general election. Like the Broward Senate district, the 88th House District is heavily Democratic, and the party nominee is heavily favored.

With all precincts reporting, Edmonds had 5,318 votes, or about 65% of those cast, while Williams had 2,833 votes.


Clarence “Chief” Williams, left, and Jervonte “Tae” Edmonds are running in the special primary election for Florida House of Representatives District 88. (Courtesy)

Williams, 69, is a retired Riviera Beach police chief and lawyer.

Edmonds, 30, is a former legislative aide and founder of Suits for Seniors, a program mentoring program for high school students. Edmonds listed endorsements from more than 30 currently elected officials in Palm Beach County, including county commissioners, School Board members, mayors, state legislators and city commissioners as well as additional endorsements from multiple former elected officials.

Riviera Beach and West Palm Beach are major population centers in the district, which runs along or near Interstate 95 from Delray Beach to Lake Park.

The highest profile legislative race was the Osgood-Williams Edden race.

Osgood, 56, defeated Williams Edden by more than 13,000 votes. With all precincts reporting, Osgood had 19,999 votes, or about 74% of those cast, while Williams Edden had 6,886.

Osgood is an associate pastor at New Mount Olive Baptist Church, one of the biggest, most important Black churches in Fort Lauderdale. She is also CEO of the Mount Olive Development Corp.

Osgood was also a champion of former Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie, a prominent figure in the Black community in Broward County. And she was the face of the School District’s opposition to Gov. Ron DeSantis when he opposed the district’s imposition of a mask mandate at the beginning of the school year to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Under the state’s resign-to-run law, Osgood had to submit an irrevocable resignation from her School Board seat to run for state Senate. Her resignation is effective March 8.

Williams Edden, 55, a legal assistant at the Broward State Attorney’s Office, has unsuccessfully run for the Florida Senate in 2008 and 2020 and for the Broward County Commission in 2014.

The district includes northwest Fort Lauderdale, Lauderhill, Lauderdale Lakes, North Lauderdale and parts of Sunrise, Tamarac, Margate, Pompano Beach and Oakland Park.

Republican Joseph C. Carter will be on the March 8 general election ballot.

The unusual January voting stems from the April 6 death of Congressman Alcee Hastings.

DuBose and state Sen. Perry Thurston, both of Broward, and state Rep. Omari Hardy, of Palm Beach County, ran in the Democratic primary for their party’s nomination to replace Hastings.

All three lost, but under the state’s resign-to-run law, DuBose, Hardy and Thurston had to give up their positions in the Florida Legislature.

In the 33rd Senate and 88th House districts the March 8 general election means the results won’t be certified until after the legislative session ends on March 11, meaning the communities will go unrepresented.

The different kinds of elections, with some open to all voters and some primaries open only to Democrats created confusion at two Broward precincts.

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Two types of elections were taking place Tuesday. The congressional election and a Broward state House of Representatives election were open to all voters. At the same time, a Democrats-only Senate primary was being held.

At Martin Luther King Elementary and Delevoe Park, a total of 31 voters didn’t get ballots with all the contests they should have, Supervisor of Elections Joe Scott said. He said workers at both precincts didn’t open both boxes and didn’t realize they didn’t have both correct styles of ballots.

It’s unknown when the winner of the 94th District contest will take office.

Because it was a universal primary open to all voters, the winner will become the new state representative. But the decision on when to seat the new Democratic lawmaker is up to Republican House Speaker Chris Sprowls. He could wait until after the date of the general election, if one had been held, or could seat the winner sooner.

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