Posted by on January 23, 2023 5:46 pm
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‘There is no plan. There’s nothing’: Insiders tell of panic and despair in Florida Democratic Party

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

‘There is no plan. There’s nothing’: Insiders tell of panic and despair in Florida Democratic Party

Brady Knox January 23, 04:57 PMJanuary 23, 04:57 PM Video Embed

Insiders are reporting widespread panic and despair in Florida’s Democratic Party after a series of crushing defeats in the midterm elections.

More than a dozen organizers, former lawmakers, donors, and other leaders told the Washington Post of the dire situation the party is in two months out from major defeat.

November’s midterm elections were largely characterized by Gov. Ron DeSantis beating Democratic challenger Charlie Crist by nearly 20 points. He even won the historically deep-blue Miami-Dade County.

“The thing about Florida Democrats is we keep learning with every passing year that just when you thought you had hit bottom, you discover that there are new abysses to fall deeper and deeper into,” Fernand Amandi, a veteran Floridian Democratic operative, told the outlet.

“There is no plan. There’s nothing. It’s just a state of suspended animation and chaos — and, more than anything, it’s the mournful regret and acceptance that Florida has been cast aside for the long, foreseeable future,” Amandi said.

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The party has faced a steep decline in the past decade — it’s failed to win a Senate seat since 2012.

Florida has become the first state since Reconstruction to have no Democratic statewide officeholders.

The losses in November led to a flurry of infighting. Many in the state’s Democratic Party laid the blame at the feet of Florida Democratic Party Chairman Manny Diaz. Ironically, it appears as a parallel occurrence to infighting within the National Republican Committee, where many are blaming Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel.

Fallout from November’s losses in Florida led to Diaz’s resignation, but he blamed the party’s “long-standing, systemic and deeply entrenched culture resistant to change.”

“We cannot win elections if we continue to rely on voter registration to drive turnout, build field operations only around elections, and expect to get our vote out without engaging voters where they live,” he added in his resignation letter.

Florida’s Democratic Party is set to select a new chairman on Feb. 25. A front-runner still hasn’t appeared.

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“We’re very much at the bottom of the bottom,” Democratic state Rep. Anna Eskamani said. She particularly bemoaned the lack of voting infrastructure.

“It doesn’t have to be this large-scale sexy program. It just has to be a program. Nothing’s going to happen overnight or in one election cycle, but we need to start building now.”

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