As primary season winds down, Florida’s 17th Congressional District is one of the last battlegrounds of Tea Party grassroots vs. the Republican establishment.
The two top candidates have similar issue positions, but are endorsed by different factions of the Republican party.
State Rep. Julio Gonzalez is a U.S. Navy veteran, serving as flight surgeon on two deployments aboard the U.S.S. America, and an attorney. He is endorsed by moderate Republicans like Reps. Carlos Curbelo, R-Fla., Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., and Neal Dunn, R-Fla. He is also backed by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.
State Sen. Greg Steube has affiliated himself with the conservative House Freedom Caucus and has the support of several Tea Party groups. Steube is a veteran who served as an airborne infantry officer and judge advocate general in the U.S. Army. He is endorsed by the Club for Growth, House Freedom Fund, National Rifle Association, and With Honor Fund.
The third candidate running is Bill Akins, a businessman.
Florida is a closed primary state, meaning voters must affiliate with a political party to vote in that party’s primary elections. The polls will close at 7:00 p.m. ET.