Democrats flip 36th GOP-held state legislative seat with Florida win

Democrats picked off another Republican-held state legislative seat in a special election Tuesday -- this time a subu...

Posted: Feb 14, 2018 11:01 AM
Updated: Feb 14, 2018 11:01 AM

Democrats picked off another Republican-held state legislative seat in a special election Tuesday -- this time a suburban, Sarasota-area district in Florida.

Margaret Good's win over James Buchanan -- the Republican whose father is US Rep. Vern Buchanan -- is another worrying sign for national Republicans headed into next fall's midterm elections.

Good won by 7 percentage points in a district that President Donald Trump carried by 5 points in the 2016 election.

That swing in Democrats' direction made the Florida contest the 36th GOP-held state legislative seat to change parties since Trump took office. And in a district where Republicans held a voter registration advantage of nearly 13,000, the Democratic Party sees it as evidence it can win in Republican strongholds.

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.

It was the third straight loss for Florida Republicans in contests seen as bellwethers for the midterms. Democrats won a Miami-area state Senate special election last September with Annette Taddeo, then won the St. Petersburg mayoral race in November.

Unlike some other Trump-country victories for Democrats in recent weeks -- including wins in Wisconsin and Missouri -- the Florida contest was an intense battle.

It's a growing, suburban district, much like the areas where other states have seen the biggest swings in Democrats' favor.

Good was backed by the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee and endorsed by former Vice President Joe Biden.

Her win comes as Republican Gov. Rick Scott considers whether to challenge Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson ahead of a March filing deadline.

"Just like we did last year with Annette Taddeo, Democrats are organizing, investing and winning elections across Florida as voters reject Rick Scott and Donald Trump's disastrous agenda," said Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez.

Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and deputy campaign manager David Bossie campaigned there over the weekend, just before Tuesday's contest. They led a Sunday rally where the crowd, echoing the Hillary Clinton-bashing Trump campaign of 2016, chanted, "Lock her up!"

"Let me just say this: You guys have an election on Tuesday," Lewandowski told a crowd Sunday, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported. "The fake news is going to watch you. The failing New York Times wants to write that James Buchanan lost the seat and that Donald Trump cannot carry a candidate anymore. That's what they want. You cannot allow it."

"The Democrats are highly motivated," Lewandowski said. "They are winning elections in places where they shouldn't ... 50 seats have already changed hands from the Republicans to the Democrats since Donald Trump was elected. That should be concerning for us. Dave and I are here to make sure that one thing happens: that Buchanan goes to the state House and we don't have another Democrat in office."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 116617

Reported Deaths: 3283
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7987178
DeSoto713479
Harrison527284
Jackson462285
Rankin398286
Madison383794
Lee360080
Forrest306978
Jones295784
Washington259299
Lafayette251343
Lauderdale2485135
Lamar227138
Oktibbeha202854
Bolivar201977
Neshoba1854111
Lowndes180262
Panola170240
Leflore168787
Sunflower163449
Warren155156
Monroe152173
Pontotoc147920
Marshall145329
Lincoln141157
Pike139256
Copiah138136
Scott125729
Coahoma125437
Grenada122639
Yazoo122634
Simpson121749
Union119225
Tate117739
Leake115242
Holmes114960
Itawamba114825
Pearl River114560
Adams108944
Prentiss106920
Wayne102022
Alcorn101112
George99919
Covington97927
Marion95443
Tippah91323
Newton86927
Chickasaw85726
Hancock85028
Tallahatchie84526
Winston84421
Tishomingo81641
Attala79726
Clarke76151
Clay70021
Jasper69117
Walthall64027
Calhoun62612
Noxubee59917
Smith59616
Montgomery55223
Yalobusha54914
Claiborne53816
Tunica53517
Lawrence52514
Perry49823
Carroll49312
Greene47818
Stone47714
Humphreys44916
Amite42513
Quitman4206
Jefferson Davis41211
Webster37613
Benton3456
Wilkinson33820
Kemper32715
Sharkey28514
Jefferson27710
Franklin2463
Choctaw2086
Issaquena1074
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 159439

Reported Deaths: 2699
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson23443377
Mobile16934315
Tuscaloosa10414140
Montgomery10298197
Madison939496
Shelby743663
Baldwin669469
Lee655065
Calhoun462161
Marshall441150
Etowah431251
Morgan418235
Houston418034
DeKalb346129
Elmore322753
St. Clair299942
Limestone289330
Walker282392
Talladega267435
Cullman250824
Lauderdale231342
Jackson217515
Autauga207431
Franklin206131
Colbert204132
Russell19533
Blount194225
Chilton189332
Dallas187227
Coffee179511
Dale177251
Covington175529
Escambia173030
Clarke135317
Chambers135244
Pike134413
Tallapoosa133087
Marion109729
Barbour10339
Marengo102522
Butler101340
Winston93713
Geneva9167
Lawrence86132
Pickens86018
Bibb84314
Randolph82916
Hale77730
Clay74912
Washington74912
Cherokee74514
Henry7196
Lowndes71428
Bullock64917
Monroe64810
Crenshaw60930
Perry5936
Fayette58413
Cleburne5738
Wilcox57012
Conecuh56113
Macon53720
Lamar5065
Sumter47321
Choctaw39212
Greene34616
Coosa2053
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Overcast
65° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 65°
Columbus
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 70°
Oxford
Overcast
59° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 59°
Starkville
Overcast
63° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 63°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather