Florida, once a swing state, increasingly a GOP stronghold

Elections 2022

(NewsNation) — For years Florida was the definition of a swing state, where Democrats and Republicans competed in nail-biter elections.

But since GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis won by just over 30,000 votes in 2018, the state has increasingly turned into a Republican stronghold.

In 2020, former President Donald Trump beat President Joe Biden by over 300,000 votes in the state. This year, DeSantis and GOP Senator Marco Rubio appear to have easily trounced their Democratic opponents by a double-digit number of percentage points.

Keith Cate, who reports from Florida for NewsNation affiliate WFLA, joined NewsNation anchor Chris Cuomo to discuss the results.

“Florida is no longer a swing state. This is clearly a state that has turned red,” Cate said.

He pointed to counties in South Florida that had until recent years been Democratic strongholds.

“You have to go back to 2002 to find a Republican who’s won Miami Dade County, and that was Jeb Bush and he was from Miami, so this is a huge win for Ron DeSantis,” he explained.

Initial exit polling suggests that part of the reason for the GOP surge is shifts in the Latino vote. A CNN exit poll found that a majority of Florida Latinos backed DeSantis; during the 2020 election, the same poll showed that 53% supported Biden over Trump.

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