HD-24 race provides a test and opportunity for House Democrats

The special election in House District 24 that has been created by a chain reaction related to John Thrasher’s selection as President of Florida State University should provide an opportunity to show how House Democrats can get their ship in order after a rough campaign cycle. We’ve defended the House Democratic campaign efforts on this site in 2014 essentially saying the six seat loss and new veto-proof GOP majority were largely a result of national trends, internal caucus divisions and bad luck. But now with a Special Election slated for April 7th in a district that only leans Republican, the Democrats have to make a strong  and visible effort if faith is to be restored before the 2016 cycle really kicks off.

House District 24, a seat being vacated by Republican Travis Hutson is one of the nearly dozen seats we have talked about in the past where Democrats botched opportunities in 2012. That year, Milissa Holland, a well-respected and connected Flagler County Commissioner ran as the Democratic candidate and got virtually no assistance from the state party. She ended up running within 2,000 votes of Hutson and lost the district by fewer votes than President Obama did. Holland’s candidacy was one that was touted by many across the state soon after the 2012 reapportionment process was complete, yet a general lack of interest was paid to her by House Victory and the state party.

Yesterday, candidate qualifying closed in House District 24 and the Democratic candidate Adam Morely got a pass right to the April 7th election. Four Republicans qualified for the seat and will have a competitive primary. This race provides a unique opportunity for Democrats to put the bad taste of 2014 behind them. The big question is will House Democrats take advantage of this chance?

We have heard lots of excuses from Democrats across the state in the past when obvious potential openings and opportunities have been disregarded. I will freely admit that I do not know what type of candidate Morely is, but realize in a Special Election, especially in a seat the Democrats would have won in 2012 with some degree of effort, the opportunity is too great to pass up.

It will be very telling to see how exactly House Democrats play the HD-24 Special Election. Will they completely ignore it? Will they wait and see about the candidate? Will they wait and see if the Republicans nominate a wounded duck? Or will they simply go all-in and seize this chance?

Stay tuned over the next few months to find out the answer.



  1. Bruce Borkosky · ·

    the parable of the frog and scorpion comes to mind


  2. Blue Dog Dem · ·

    Failure to run hard in this seat would be criminal.

    But if Morley isn’t using ulvert’s vendors he’s going to get burned.


  3. Broward Voter · ·

    Another letdown coming.


  4. Found here: https://groups.google.com/forum/?hl=en#!topic/jobsthatareleft/_aem6CKWXUs The Florida Democratic Party (“FDP”) is seeking a Deputy Executive Director to oversee its political operations and manage special projects with an emphasis on candidate recruitment and training.

    The road to the White House in 2016 runs directly through Florida. Our nation’s largest battleground state, 2016 will feature perhaps the largest presidential state operation in history as we work to retain the presidency. In addition, Florida will have a top tier U.S. Senate race, multiple top tier Congressional races and both chambers of our legislature on the ballot.

    This position offers the ability to work with multiple high level targeted national and state races. This is not an entry-level position, as we will be looking for a candidate with 2 to 3 cycles of experience in Democratic campaigns, state parties or caucus work. Extensive experience with VoteBuilder a must along with good experience with political, constituency or community organizing. Experience managing staff is preferred.


    -Candidate Recruitment, this includes coordinating and working with all of the various partner organizations that are also engaging in candidate recruitment
    -Developing and conducting candidate trainings throughout the cycle
    -Managing off-site political staff stationed throughout Florida
    -Managing the state party’s relationships with elected officials at the federal, state and local levels.
    -Managing special projects and assignments as directed by the Executive Director

    -Working with our Victory Caucuses to ensure the success of our legislative candidates

    -This is a Senior Staff position

    To apply, please email a resume and cover letter to sarceneaux@fladems.com with “Florida Deputy Executive Director” in the subject line. This position is located in Tallahassee.


  5. Don’t hold your breathe!


  6. Not a winnable seat. Sorry. No need to try.


%d bloggers like this: