By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. Aug. 23, 2022: Democratic Haitian American U.S. Rep. Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick of Florida’s 20th Congressional District on Tuesday defeated primary challengers, Jamaican Americans, Dale Holness and Anika Omphroy, by a landslide, likely paving the way for her to maintain her seat in Congress and earn her first full term after winning a special election earlier this year.
Cherfilus-McCormick secured 47,425 votes or 65.6 percent of the votes cast while Holeness managed to pull just 20,716 or 28.6 percent. Omphroy garnered 4,181 or just 5.8 percent.
It was a major contrast from Cherfilus-McCormick’s special election victory which she won after a recount, by 5 votes over Holness.
Cherfilus-McCormick will now face Republican Drew Montez-Clark, who ran unopposed in the primary, in the November general election. Montez-Clark previously ran unsuccessfully in a 2020 primary for a Florida House of Representatives seat.
Cherfilus-McCormick is the first Haitian American to be elected to Congress from Florida and the first Haitian American Democrat to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Holness, who has served as a Broward County commissioner for over a decade, had been the likely candidate to replace Hastings but Cherfilus-McCormick triggered the upset win earlier this year.
The Primary race between the two had turned ugly in recent weeks. Last month, Cherfilus-McCormick sued Holness for more than $1 million, accusing his campaign of sending a defamatory text message that referred to allegations that the congresswoman used taxpayer money to fund her race against Holness last year.
Financial fraud allegations against Cherfilus-McCormick surfaced after a Florida Politics column called into question the timing of more than $6 million in loans she made to her 2021 congressional campaign and over $8 million in federal funds that her healthcare company, Trinity Health Care Services, received through state contracts.
Cherfilus-McCormick has denied wrongdoing and defended her company’s efforts to help vaccinate underserved communities against COVID-19, accusing Holness of trying to “tarnish my good name that I worked so hard to achieve.”
On Tuesday she blew both Holness away along with Omphroy. “We did it again. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!,” she posted on her Twitter campaign account.