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Democratic candidates running for Congressional District 23

A look at the Democratic candidates in District 23 race
A look at the Democratic candidates in District 23 race 05:16

MIAMI - It's a new look for US Congressional District 23, as it now stretches up the coast from Fort Lauderdale to Boca Raton and covers much of North Broward and South Palm Beach. 

On the Democratic side, it's a crowded primary field with 6 candidates.

Allen Ellison 04:24

Allen Ellison is a cosmetologist who lives outside the district in Sebring, but says he plans to move here. 

"I'm the only candidate that simply do not take money from special interest groups or pacs," he said.

His main issues include affordable housing, increasing disability benefits, protecting social security and women's rights. 

He wants to use his experience to increase gun safety measures. 

"I happen to be a survivor of gun violence, surviving be robbed at gunpoint by two individuals, I'm the only candidate that has had to literally bury two nephews due to gun violence. I buried an uncle and cousin," he said.

Michaelangelo Hamilton 04:28

Michaelangelo Hamilton is a 22-year-old who lives in Margate.

He's 3 years shy of the minimum age to be seated in congress, but he said in our history others below 25 were admitted. "I want to provide a voice to the voiceless and make a difference in Washington," Hamilton said.

His main issues include the economy, fighting climate change, expanding social security and Medicare, protecting reproductive rights and ending gun violence. 

"The current bill that the president signed off on, I believe, is framework that we can build upon in Congress. I'm someone who will support gun licensing, gun safety storage any legislation like banning assault weapons as well, reinstating that ban," he said.

Hava Holzhauer 14:04

Hava Holzhauer lives in Boca Raton. 

She's a civil rights and worker's rights attorney. She ran the Florida anti-defamation league. 

"I've been doing the good work of standing up for others and helping people for 20-plus years," Holzhauer said.

Her main focus includes justice issues like civil & women's rights, climate & energy future, common sense gun laws and expanding the right to healthcare. She wants to work to codify Roe into law.

"We don't know down the line how that's going to affect all the other rights that are related privacy, for example, marriage equality is related to privacy rights, we know that interracial is related to privacy rights, contraception, who you can even live within your home," she said.

Jared Moskowitz 03:37

Jared Moskowitz is a former Parkland commissioner and state representative. He was Florida's Director of Emergency Management under Governor DeSantis, and is a current Broward commissioner appointed by the governor. 

"I get stuff done. I get it done. A lot of candidates talk about what they will do. I talk about what I've done," Moskowitz said.

His main topics include affordable housing, controlling inflation, gun violence prevention, like improving background checks and banning assault weapons. 

He is pro-abortion rights. He said he'll strive to protect democracy. 

"Democracy is under attack, it's not just for saying, it's true. It's not just January 6th, it's every single solitary day seeing institutions undermined, the truth undermined. When we're attacking the truth we're attacking democracy," he said.

Ben Sorensen 02:33

Ben Sorensen is the current Vice Mayor of Fort Lauderdale, a Lt. Commander in the Navy reserves at South Com, and is a former teacher. 

"I'm a fighter. I'm a life-long democrat. I'm going to fight for our communities. I'm not going to turn down any fight," Sorensen said.

His focus includes affordable housing, pro-abortion rights, climate change and is a supporter of the LGBTQ+ community. 

He believes the US needs stricter gun laws. 

"When I was elected as a city commissioner for the city of Fort Lauderdale we had gun shows in our city parks. I lead the effort to kick those out, we were sued, we won. So we need to have national background checks, We need to renew the assault weapons ban. We need to eliminate mass capacity magazines and have national red flag laws," he said.

Michael Trout 10:40

Michael Trout is a retired private livery driver from Boca Raton.

He calls himself a progressive Democrat. "I have a lifelong interest in perfecting this union," Trout said.

Much of his campaign focuses on reform. He wants tax reform making the code more simple and change how candidate debates are formatted. 

He is looking to tie legislators' pay to the median income in their districts, get public funding for campaigns and supports term limits beginning with the House. 

"We expand the term to 4 years, make it one single term. We extend the term to the senate 8 years, we make it one simple adequate limited term. And by the same token we extend the term of the presidency to 6 years, one single adequate limited term," he said. 

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