Democrat Margaret Good takes fundraising lead in Sarasota state House race
Democrat Margaret Good surged to a fundraising lead in Sarasota’s state House District 72 race with a burst of campaign contributions over the last month that dwarfed what Republican James Buchanan brought in during the same period.
Good raised $257,058 between Jan. 5 and Feb. 8, a haul that more than doubled her fundraising total for the entire campaign. It also is more than three times the $70,690 that Buchanan raised during the same time.
Good’s strong fundraising for a relatively low-profile state House seat that leans Republican and went for President Donald Trump in 2016 is another sign that Democrats nationwide are looking to the Feb. 13 special election to make a statement and gain momentum heading into the November midterm election.
Good has benefited from a steady stream of small dollar contributions. She had 2,977 contributions during the last fundraising period and most of them were smaller amounts.
The campaign has been getting help from progressive groups nationwide, and donations are pouring in from progressive activists across the country.
Buchanan’s final fundraising report includes contributions from many prominent Southwest Florida GOP donors, along with tobacco, gambling and insurance companies and other special interests that lobby the Legislature.
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The race: Margaret Good (D), James Buchanan (R), and Alison Foxall (L) will run for Florida State House after incumbent Alexandra Miller (R) resigned to spend more time at work and at home. Post tells Teen Vogue that Democrats feel they have a “great shot to flip” this district blue.
Meet the Democratic Candidate: “As we struggle with the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, I’ve been helping my neighbors and our community with recovery — but I know there is so much more I can do,” Good, an attorney and community activist has said. “It’s time to shake things up in Tallahassee and fight for the health care and jobs we need, the education our children deserve, and the environment that we love.”
Meet the Republican Candidate: “My number one priority is meeting the people in the district, ideally in a one-on-one opportunity to speak to those issues that are important,” Buchanan, a business owner, has said. He also supports legislation that would put restrictions on cities not enforcing immigration laws.
Meet the Libertarian Candidate: “We are giving [people] a reason to go out and vote and to say they are done with two-party bickering,” Foxall, a marketing agency owner who is pro-marijuana, pro-gun, and anti-drilling in Florida, has said. “We’re aiming to take the win.”
Margaret Good campaign fueled by Democrats from across the country ...
A St. Pete Polls survey released on the eve of the election shows the Siesta Key attorney holding a slight lead over Buchanan, 48 to 45 percent, with Foxall taking only 4 percent; 3 percent said they were “unsure.”
If Good were to maintain that lead and win Tuesday night, it would be considered a significant upset as well as a further indication of a potential Democratic “blue wave” in this year’s midterm elections.
What’s considered surprising (by some) is that Good outraised Buchanan in campaign contributions, taking in $484,372 to $353,320 for the Republican. Good raised an additional $176,000 for her political committee, New Day Florida. ...
Sunday afternoon, Corey Lewandowski made note of the Democratic intensity in HD 72 and across the country. Lewandowski served as Donald Trump‘s campaign manager for a spell in 2015 and 2016.
“The Democrats are highly motivated,” he told a crowd who gathered at Dolphin Aviation in Sarasota, reported the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. “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.”
Democrat Margaret Good Flips Seat in Florida, The 36th Democratic Flip Since Trump's Inauguration
She won by a margin of nearly 8 points in a district that went for Trump by about 5.
Democrat Margaret Good won a special election for state representative in Florida’s 72nd district on Tuesday night, earning the Democratic party its 36th legislative flip since Trump’s inauguration.
The closely-watched race pitted Good against Libertarian Alison Foxall and Republican James Buchanan, whose father Vern represents the area in Congress.
The seat opened up last year when Republican Alex Miller resigned from the legislature citing her family and business as reasons. During the 2016 presidential election, President Trump won the district by just five points. But, overall, Republicans outnumber Democrats in the district by some 13,000 voters.
Good's final margin was nearly 8 percentage points and over 3,000 votes.
The Democratic party, bullish on gaining momentum before the 2018 midterm elections, set its sights on the Sarasota district as another opportunity to flip a legislative seat nationwide.
Daily Kos Elections
Florida woman wins Democrats' 36th red-to-blue flip, Florida man continues to live in infamy ...
A late poll had Rep.-elect Good pulling slightly ahead of Buchanan on the even of the election, 48-45 percent—a 6-point swing from a Jan. 24 poll that had Buchanan in the lead with 49-46 percent. This shift in polling came on the heels of a Trump-style Buchanan rally on Sunday that featured a guest appearance from former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and chants of “lock her up,” because that’s where Republicans still are, apparently.
Good also had a national-level campaign booster, in the form of former Vice President Joe Biden, who endorsed the Democrat about a week before the election and recorded a robocall for her campaign. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley headlined a fundraiser for Good, too.
Good outpaced her GOP opponent in fundraising in the final weeks of the race, bringing in about $484,000 to Buchanan’s $353,000. However, both sides were targets and beneficiaries of outside spending, so each party’s final investment in this contest will only get tallied in full at a later date. Good’s field program was robust and drew heavily on local grassroots energy: Volunteers reportedly made over 120,000 phone calls and knocked on 45,000 doors in the district. Good herself knocked on 2,000 of those.
Indeed, voter turnout in this race was record-setting. Going back 15 years, the biggest state House special election on record came in 2008, when total turnout was 22 percent. Before polls even opened on Tuesday, absentee and in-person early voting turnout was 3 percent. That number jumped to 25 percent by 11 AM ET the day of the actual election.
With Republicans losing so many seats in special elections over the course of the cycle, it could be easy to grow inured to the significance of these Democratic pickups. But Tuesday’s Florida win for Team Blue might be one of the most worrisome yet for GOP candidatesthis fall. This seat not only went for Trump, it had traditionally supported Republicans down-ballot as well. What’s more, Buchanan benefitted from his father’s name recognition and Republicans had a significant voter registration advantage in the district. To top it all off, national Republicans took interest, even sending a key Trump campaign operative to help get out the vote.
Democrat Margaret Good wins upset victory in state House race - News - Sarasota Herald-Tribune ...
The final results weren’t even close, either, adding to the narrative that Democrats are on a roll nationwide. Good won by seven percentage points, claiming 52.2 percent of the vote compared with 44.8 percent for Buchanan and 3 percent for Foxall. That’s a huge swing from 2016 when Trump won the District by 4.4 percentage points.
Millions of dollars flooded into the race as both major parties sought to make a statement. The contest largely became a referendum on Trump. Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s former campaign manager, even flew in on the eve of the election to rally Republicans for Buchanan.
But despite Trump having carried District 72 and Republicans having 12,060 more registered voters in the district than Democrats, Good pulled out a convincing victory with a message that the GOP leadership in Tallahassee and Washington, D.C., is going down the wrong path.
Democrats rallied behind Good, giving her campaign ample resources. The Florida Democratic Party ignored the District 72 seat in recent years after failing to recruit strong candidates. But the party jumped in on Good’s behalf early, paying for staff and other campaign expenses.
Rick Wilson predicts the Dems will win 70 more seats in November.
I think that's an optimistic number by 100%, but Rick is far smarter than I am at this.
In a wilderness of mirrors, what will the spider do beyond the circuit of the shuddering Bear in fractured atoms? -TS Eliot (somewhat modified)
All warfare is based on deception. - Sun Tzu
All warfare is based on deception. - Sun Tzu
This win was, to quote Uncle Joe, a big fucking deal. Good carried a district that is not only heavily Republican, but honored Drumpf a few years ago with the local party's Statesman of the Year Award. Maybe the tide is really turning.
"I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept."