Florida Democratic Party
Florida Democratic Party Chairman Rod Smith Ideology American Liberalism
Blue Dog Democrat
National affiliation Democratic Party Official colors Blue Politics of the United States
The Florida Democratic Party has historically dominated Florida's state and local politics. Florida's Governor's Mansion was closed to Republicans from 1877 until 1967, when Claude R. Kirk, a Republican from Jacksonville, was sworn-in as Governor of Florida.
Florida politics was largely dominated by the Democrats until Nixon's Southern Strategy, which took advantage of white objections to the advances of the American Civil Rights Movement resulted in a regional political realignment for the south. After Nixon's victory in 1968, the state only voted Democratic in three Presidential elections: 1976 (Jimmy Carter), 1996 (Bill Clinton), and 2008 (Barack Obama). The presidential election in 2000 was decided by a margin of 537 votes out of approximately 6 million cast, earning George W. Bush the presidency over Al Gore.
The Florida Senate was dominated by Democrats until 1992, when a majority of Republicans was elected. The Florida House of Representatives turned Republican after the November 1996 election. Since then, the number of Democrats in both chambers have continued to drop. The Florida Legislature became the first legislature in any of the states of the former confederacy to come under complete Republican control when the Republicans gained control of the House and Senate in the 1996 election. However, in the 2006 election the Democrats actually gained seats in the State House, the first instance of this occurring since the early 1980s.
The most Democratic region of the state is South Florida, which contains the large cities of Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach. The Tampa Bay region is also relatively Democratic, although it has become much more competitive in recent electoral cycles. Leon County, which contains the state capitol of Tallahassee, and Alachua County, home to the city of Gainesville and the University of Florida, are also strong Democratic areas. North Florida and the panhandle are also very Democratic on the local level, although those two regions are solid Republican strongholds in presidential elections.
Florida Democrats demanded, on March 13 2008, a new primary vote, and state party officials have a proposal for recouping the 210 delegates the Sunshine State lost when it moved its primary ahead of the approved time frame. After weeks of negotiations, the Florida Democratic Party said March 17 2008 it would not hold a second primary in the state.
The current chairman of the Florida Democratic Party is former Florida State Senator Rod Smith.
Current Federal Democratic Officeholders
U.S. Senators Bill Nelson, Senior Member of the United States Senate from the state of Florida. U.S. Representatives Corrine Brown, 3rd District- Gainesville, Jacksonville, Orlando. Kathy Castor, 11th District- Tampa, St. Petersburg. Frederica Wilson, 17th District- Hollywood, North Miami, Pembroke Pines. Ted Deutch, 19th District- Greenacres, Coral Springs. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, 20th District- Fort Lauderdale, Plantation, Davie. Alcee Hastings, 23rd District- West Palm Beach, Pompano Beach, Delray Beach.
Former Florida Governors and U.S. Senators
Former Governors of Florida Buddy MacKay Lawton Chiles Wayne Mixson Bob Graham Reubin Askew W. Haydon Burns C. Farris Bryant LeRoy Collins Daniel McCarty Fuller Warren Miller Caldwell Spessard Holland Fred Cone David Sholtz Doyle Carlton John Martin Cary Hardee Park Trammell Albert Gilchrist Napoleon Broward William Jennings William Bloxham Henry Mitchell Francis Fleming Edward Perry William Bloxham George Drew Abraham Allison John Milton Madison Perry James Broome William Moseley
United States Senators
Former U.S. Senators from Florida Bob Graham Lawton Chiles Richard Stone George Smathers Spessard Holland Charles Andrews Scott Loftin Claude Pepper William Luther Hill Park Trammell Nathan Bryan James Taliaferro Duncan Fletcher William Milton William James Bryan Samuel Pasco Charles Jones Stephen Mallory II Wilkinson Call Stephen Mallory James Westcott David Levy Yulee
- Florida Democratic Party
- Florida Netroots Coalition
- The Small County Coalition of the FDP
- Florida Young Democrats
- Florida College Democrats
- Democratic Women's Club of Florida
- Democratic Caribbean Caucus of Florida
- Democratic Black Caucus of Florida
Political parties in Florida Ballott AccessDemocratic • Republican • Whig No-Ballot Access
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