In what would be one of the most shocking upsets in Florida legislative history, Rep. Chris Dorworth, the Lake Mary Republican in line to become speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, is in danger of losing his seat in the state House altogether.
Dorworth trails his Democratic challenger, former Longwood firefighter Mike Clelland, by 37 votes out of more than 73,000 cast in his Seminole County house district.
Elections workers must still count an unknown number of provisional ballots. Seminole County Supervisor of ElectionsMike Ertel said there could be anywhere from 300 to 600 such ballots, which will be counted later this week.
A mandatory recount, required in any race where the margin of victory is less than half a percent, appears inevitable.
First elected to the House in 2007, Dorworth, 36, is one of the most powerful figures in Florida politics. He raised $544,000 through his conventional re-election account — more than any other House candidate in Florida — and another $344,000 through a political committee that accepted five-figure checks from the likes of the Florida Realtors, Walt Disney World and Morgan & Morgan.