Democrats just won multiple crucial elections around the nation
How can any election of national importance be taking place in May of 2023? The vast majority of elections are in even numbered years, and even then, they tend to take place in November. But actually there were a handful of elections on Tuesday with national implications, and the Democratic Party dominated them.
First there was the special election for Pennsylvania state house district 163. Why was this important? This had been a Republican seat, but then the Democrats won it in the last election, but then the Democrat holding the seat was forced to resign. The Democrats needed to win the seat again on Tuesday in order to retain majority control over the state house – and they did. This was a race that theoretically could have gone either way, but the Democrats won.
Then there was the highly competitive race for mayor of Jacksonville, the largest city in Florida. Republicans have held the mayor’s seat in Jacksonville for 26 out of the past 30 years. But Democratic activists and enthusiasts from around the nation (including some Palmer Report readers) chipped in to help the Democratic candidate in that race, and she ended up winning by about four points.
Finally, Independent candidate Yemi Mobolade has won the race for mayor of Colorado Springs over the Republican candidate. Mobolade is a moderate who might as well be a Democrat. Colorado Springs had long been staunchly Republican. Not anymore!
Notably, the Republicans don’t appear to have pulled off any meaningful wins in Tuesday’s elections. They did win another Pennsylvania state house special election, in District 108, but that’s a far right district where the Republican was always going to win anyway.
It’s always tricky to try to extract national implications from a handful of local elections around the nation. But the Jacksonville win has to be seen at least partly as a repudiation of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, whose extremism and bumbling ineptitude finally seem to be catching up to him. The Pennsylvania win is a prime example of the Democratic Party successfully carrying out a winning gameplan in an election it knew it needed to win, with everyone from President Biden on down getting involved. And the Colorado Springs race is a sign that even a number of Republican voters have had enough of what the Republican Party has become.
These results are also a good reminder that those of you reading this can easily make a difference in these kinds of competitive elections. Many of you donated to the Jacksonville race, and the Democrat won by four points – and that kind of thing is not a coincidence. There will be numerous House races in 2024 that come down to less than one point, and those races will decide the House majority. Let’s smartly focus on those competitive races when the time comes.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report