‘I do love her’: Friends become political opponents in South Florida

Edmonson challenges Wilson for Florida’s 24th Congressional District

Audrey M. Edmonson is challenging her friend Rep. Frederica Wilson to represent Florida’s 24th Congressional District. On Thursday, Wilson said “it’s fun” to her.

MIAMI – Audrey M. Edmonson is challenging Rep. Frederica Wilson to run for Florida’s 24th Congressional District.

On Thursday, Wilson said it is their friendship that makes the primary race “fun.”

Edmonson, 69, declared her candidacy last week. Wilson, 79, has been serving two-year terms representing the district since 2014.

“I am welcoming her to the race because there are so many issues, so much work that I have to do,” Wilson said.

They are both Democrats and share the same values. Edmonson has advocated for Wilson’s The 5000 Role Models of Excellence Project, a dropout prevention program.

And like good friends, Wilson has also been there for Edmonson.

“I have supported her throughout whatever she did,” Wilson said.

Edmonson, who started her political career as the former mayor of the village of El Portal in the late 1990s, was a member of the Miami-Dade County Commission from 2004 to 2020.

Edmonson always represented Miami-Dade’s District 3, which includes the communities of Liberty City, Little Haiti, Overtown, and Allapattah. She said she has a lot of respect for Wilson, but she knows she can do the job better.

Edmonson, a former chair of the Miami-Dade commission, criticized Wilson’s propensity to lean on proxy voting, a procedure that has allowed many representatives to avoid being physically present to vote during the pandemic.

“I do love her ... I think I will be the one to show up to work,” Edmonson said with her mother, Cleora Brooks, by her side.

“I told her, [if] this is what she wants to do, go for it,” Brooks said.

The Democratic primary is on Aug. 23 and the general election is on Nov. 8.

Map of Florida’s 24th Congressional district

About the Authors:

Glenna Milberg joined Local 10 News in September 1999 to report on South Florida's top stories and community issues. She also serves as co-host on Local 10's public affairs broadcast, "This Week in South Florida."

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.