Val Demings drops out of Orange County mayoral race

By : Staff Report
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Orlando – Former Orlando police Chief Val Demings stunned many of her supporters when she announced she was ending her campaign to unseat Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs on May 20, explaining that it was “not the right race at this time.”

Demings, an active supporter of LGBT rights in Orlando, announced her bid to unseat the first-term mayor in January, saying she would be representing the small businesses of Orange County—among other issues—in making sure they had a voice.

Demings raised nearly $60,000 this quarter, compared to the $20,000 Mayor Jacobs received in contributions, according to Demings campaign consultant Kate Coyne-McCoy.

“I am humbled by and grateful for the support I have received from every corner of our county,” Demings said in a statement released by her campaign. “After careful analysis I have determined that this is just not the right race at this time.”

No further reasons for her departure have been disclosed. As of May 20, the Demings campaign website was deactivated.

Demings was arguably the more gay-friendly candidate for Orange County Mayor. She spoke at a marriage equality rally in January and has frequently, publicly supported LGBT equality. Jacobs has drawn criticism for her record on LGBT issues. She resisted the passage of a domestic partner registry for Orange County and has never publicly state her support for marriage equality.

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