Democrat Margaret Good rolled on to victory by seven points in the Sarasota-based 72nd District, defeating Republican James Buchanan in a special election. The win took place in an area that backed Donald Trump for president in 2016.
Democrats know that Florida is a key state for them in the all-important midterm elections. Trump won the state by a razor-thin 1.4 percent of the vote.
Good’s victory represented a nearly 12-point swing from Trump’s winning margin in the district. It shows the West Coast of Florida seems to be breaking for the Democrats in a state that is a deep purple. But the state legislature remains a deep red with the GOP controlling the state house, senate and the governor’s mansion.
“People deserve better and want to have better and still have hope that there’s going to be something better than our current administration,” Good said at her victory party here Tuesday.
The special election was called for by Gov. Rick Scott after the sudden resignation of former Rep. Alex Miller in September. Miller stepped down after less than a year in office, citing business concerns and raising two teenagers.
For the Florida Democratic Party, it was the second straight special election win. Sen. Annette Taddeo of Miami, scored another win earlier this year.
Good’s win came in an area that has 12,000 more registered Republicans than Democrats. But as we have seen around the country the Democratic Party has been turning out in record numbers and it was another win for a woman which is the other storyline that seems to be developing not only in Florida but nationwide. The Florida contest is the 36th GOP-held state legislative seat to change parties since Trump took office.
It’s far short of the nearly 1,000 seats Republicans won during former President Barack Obama’s tenure, but Democrats see the wins as signs of an energized base that could deliver control of the House, and potentially the Senate, to the party in this year’s midterm elections.