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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Don't get cocky, Fla Dems. 2014 will be much tougher than '12



Democrats just concluded their most successful Florida election cycle in more than three decades, not just delivering the state to President Barack Obama and re-electing Sen. Bill Nelson, but also picking up state House, state Senate and congressional seats.

But don't get cocky, Florida Democrats. In many respects, 2014 is more important for the vitality of the party than 2012.

As you prepare to elect a new state party chairman there's every reason to worry heading into the new election cycle, even against vulnerable Republican Gov. Rick Scott.

You won't have the massive Obama grass roots machine registering and turning out tens of thousands of new voters. Or a lavishly funded TV campaign of Obama. And if past is prologue, Florida Republicans will have far stronger turnout than Democrats.

"Democrats have a long history of not coming out to vote in the non-presidential election years. We've seen that four times in a row,'' Alex Sink, the 2010 Democratic nominee for governor and potential 2014 candidate, said in a Political Connections interview on Bay News 9.

"The big question I believe for Democrats in the next election is how much of that energy and enthusiasm that we had during this presidential election can carry on to the 2014 races," Sink said. "I think it's probably going to be unfortunately very difficult."

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[Last modified: Sunday, December 2, 2012 9:27am]


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