Miami, Fl – New Florida Majority, a c4 racial justice organization dedicated to expanding democracy and restoring justice, announced Tuesday that it was endorsing Democrat candidate Annette Taddeo in the State Senate District 40 special election.

The move comes days after the group helped co-sponsor a candidate forum featuring Taddeo and Independent Christian “He-Man” Schlaerth. Republican candidate Jose Felix Diaz was invited but did not attend.

NewFM Executive Director Andrea Mercado released the following statement endorsement Taddeo:

“At New Florida Majority, we are working hard to help historically marginalized communities become more active in a democratic system that needs their participation. On the political advocacy side, we are looking to support candidates who will fight to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to seize the American Dream by supporting issues like affordable housing, a livable wage and educational access for all children.

However, after speaking to a number of community leaders and reviewing the all candidates’ stances, as especially expressed in their performance at our community forum last Thursday and their answers to our candidate survey, we have decided that Annette Taddeo is the best candidate to send to Tallahassee this September to complete the term that Frank Artiles started. Ms. Taddeo is a leader who will be able to go to work on the issues from Day 1 and has the experience, passion and a commitment to community inclusion that her community needs on the state level.

We wish that we could properly evaluate Rep. Jose Felix Diaz. His lack of response to our survey and his absence at the most recent community forum makes it difficult to decide whether he will be responsive to all the residents of his district. A district that pressured their former elected official to resign because of racist, homophobic and sexist comments needs to know if their next elected representative will not be silent on the matters that are important to them.

Annette Taddeo won’t be silent. She will work hard in the public eye and behind the scenes to ensure that her community is respected and well-represented.