US Midterms: DeSantis Beats Crist in Fla. Gov. Race

With 99% of expected votes counted as of Wednesday evening, Florida's incumbent governor, Republican Ron DeSantis, was re-elected by a 19.4-point margin over his Democratic challenger Charlie Crist in Tuesday's midterms.

US Midterms: DeSantis Beats Crist in Fla. Gov. Race
Image credit: AFP/Getty Images [via NBC News]

Facts

  • With 99% of expected votes counted as of Wednesday evening, Florida's incumbent governor, Republican Ron DeSantis, was re-elected by a 19.4-point margin over his Democratic challenger Charlie Crist in Tuesday's midterms.
  • Crist, who served as Florida's 44th Governor from 2007 to 2011 as a Republican, gave a concession speech while surrounded by his family at around 8:30 pm on Tuesday.
  • The overwhelming victory — which included a flip of Miami-Dade County to the GOP after two decades of Democrat control — confirmed Republicans' grip of power in the once swing state. The result also affirmed DeSantis as a potential contender for presidency in 2024.
  • At his Election Night victory celebration, DeSantis thanked Floridians for their support, which he said had "re-written the political map." Florida doesn't have a single Democrat holding statewide office following the elections — DeSantis deemed it "a win for the ages."
  • This comes as the voters registered as Republicans outnumbered those registered as Democrats in Florida for the first time in the state's political history — the GOP had 320K more registered voters than their opponents. The shift reflected a significant victory for Florida's Republican Party which spent $5M on voter registration efforts in the lead up to the midterms.
  • DeSantis governed decisively in his first term, which he won by less than half a percentage point. He is expected to keep engaging in cultural fights against the so-called "woke" agenda and to consolidate the power of his office during his second term.

Sources: NBC, ABC, New York Times, FOX News, Politico, and Tampa Bay.

Narratives

  • Republican narrative, as provided by New York Post. DeSantis' policies reflect American principles and must serve as a model for the entire nation. Turning Florida into a refuge of sanity by fighting authoritarianism and "wokeism" has seen him consolidate support and ensure this historic result. This new mandate positions DeSantis as a strong contender for 2024, especially considering the fate of Trump's candidates in the midterm elections.
  • Democratic narrative, as provided by Time. DeSantis's policies during his first governorship should be enough to provoke a major backlash, but Democrats have allowed his re-election by failing to invest in Crist's campaign. Democrats should have done more to target DeSantis and highlight the issues in Florida that he has failed to address — now the new governor will be emboldened to carry out further controversial policies and possibly even run for GOP presidential nomination.
  • Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by Politico. DeSantis has performed impressively, but Donald Trump should not be counted out of the 2024 presidential election just yet. Only a fraction of the party faithful that publicly supported Trump through these midterms has peeled off, and his ability to raise campaign funding remains strong. Although DeSantis looks like a convincing presidential nominee, he is yet to prove his appeal beyond the state of Florida — could current commentary be yet another premature declaration of Trump's demise?

Predictions

Who will be the Republican nominee for the 2024 US Presidential Election?
Metaculus is a community dedicated to generating accurate predictions about future real-world events by aggregating the collective wisdom, insight, and intelligence of its participants.