Contrary to media interpretations, Democrats underperformed woefully nationally, and in Flagler County they were again all but wiped out. To survive locally they have two choices: either run their candidates as Republicans (and support other moderate Republicans), or keep dying at the polls.
For Flagler County and Palm Coast, it is an election of new faces: four races, four newcomers to elected office: Leann Pennington won a seat on the County Commission, Theresa Pontieri and Cathy Heighter won seats to the Palm Coast City Council, and Will Furry won a Flagler County School Board seat.
Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and his Democratic challenger, Congresswoman Val Demings, quickly got combative Tuesday as they sought to sway remaining undecided voters in their only head-to-head meeting ahead of the Nov. 8 election for a seat the GOP must retain if it wants to take control of the U.S. Senate.
Our two upper-chamber gents aren’t merely lobbing charges of Banana Republicanism at Democrats. At the recent CPAC meeting, Rick Scott gave a rootin’ tootin’ slap-your-dog-and-arrest-your-undocumented-mama speech warning, “The militant Left has now taken control of our economy, our culture, and our country.”
Republican candidates’ hitching their wagon to Trump and Trumpism raises a question about the tried-and-tested plan of candidates’ appealing to the party base in the primary before pivoting closer to the center in the general election: Will that post-primary transformation be possible for Republicans in 2022?
With the theme “Never Tire,” Orlando Democratic Congresswoman Val Demings on Wednesday formally launched her campaign to try to unseat U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., in 2022.
The man the Orlando Sentinel once called “the worst person in the Florida Legislature” (and remember, y’all, there’s hell of a lot of competition) kicked off his bid by lying, assuring incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster that he would not run against him, then filing the paperwork to run against him.
Trump’s Florida victory aside, Republicans upset two incumbent South Florida congresswomen, flipped five state House seats and could pick up a seat in the state Senate, making a mockery of Democrats’ hopes to cut into the GOP’s legislative dominance.
With all early voting results counted, Sheriff Rick Staly had an insurmountable lead to win re-election to his second term, as did County Commissioner Donald O’Brien. Andy Dance, the school board member, also had an insurmountable lead to win the County Commission seat Charlie Ericksen opted not to contest.
Though powered by the largest vote-by-mail volume in the county’s history, Flagler County’s 2020 primary election turnout would need a relatively strong in-person voting tally today to exceed 2018’s turnout of 30 percent. The 2016 primary turnout of 27 percent is a closer target.