Daytona Beach, FL – It was a good night to be a Republican in Volusia and Flagler, and not such a great one for Democrats.
Red was the dominant color of the electoral map in both counties during the 2018 midterm election, especially in the partisan races, where the GOP managed to take back the only major local legislative seat which wasn’t in its control prior to tonight (November 6th).
Rick Scott (R) declares victory over incumbent Bill Nelson (D) by a slim margin. The current Florida Governor cruised to victory over the Senator by 10% in Volusia and nearly 20% in Flagler.
Despite being heavily outspent in advertising, Michael Waltz (R) won all four counties in his district, beating Nancy Soderberg (D) by over 12% overall. He replaces fellow GOP member Ron DeSantis.
DeSantis’ race with Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) ends with him winning by a narrow margin overall, but he did manage to win Volusia (11%) and Flagler (18%) by a significant amount. He’ll replace Rick Scott.
Ashley Moody (R) takes the baton from term-limited fellow GOP’er Pam Bondi, defeating Sean Shaw (D) by nearly 7% overall. Moody’s victory margins were much greater in Volusia (17%) and Flagler (24%).
Jimmy Patronis (R) will keep his job with a 4% overall victory over Jeremy Ring (D). Patronis won Volusia by 13% and Flagler by 20% after he was appointed to the post last year by Scott.
It was a tight race, but Matt Caldwell (R) is poised for now to take over for term-limited fellow Republican Adam Putnam, defeating Nikki Fried (D) by less than 1%. Caldwell won by double-digits in Volusia (10%) and Flagler (18%).
Tom Wright (R) will replace the late Dorothy Hukill, winning by 10% over Melissa Martin (D) in southern Volusia and by 18% in northern Brevard County.
Prior to tonight, three of those seats were red and one was blue. You can now color them all red as Elizabeth Fetterhoff (R) – formerly Hukill’s press secretary – narrowly knocked off incumbent Patrick Henry in District 26, winning by just 72 votes out of 61,038 cast.
The GOP incumbents in the other two Volusia-only races – Tom Leek (25) and David Santiago (27) – each won by double-digits, with Leek taking nearly 60% of the vote over Katie Tripp (D) and Joe Hannoush (Libertarian) and Santiago with an 11% victory over Carol Lawrence (D).
In District 24 – which covers all of Flagler and parts of St. Johns and Volusia – Paul Renner (R) won all three counties over Adam Morley (D), including by 19% in Flagler.
Linda Gaustad took all four counties (Flagler, Volusia, Putnam & St. Johns) over Ryan Will, dominating in Flagler (26%) and winning by double-digits as well in Volusia (12%).