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What Florida’s conservative shift means for the 2022 midterms

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at The Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando, Florida.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at The Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando, Florida.

The Florida legislature is meeting this week to vote on the state’s new congressional districts. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis released a new map which would eliminate two districts in northern Florida currently held by Black Democrats. The latest Census data will provide Florida an additional seat in Congress in the southwest part of the state, which is expected to vote Republican. 

The once perennial swing-state has been shifting since former President Donald J. Trump’s election in 2016. For the first time in decades, there are more registered Republicans in the state than Democrats.

DeSantis is up for re-election this November and raised $100 million for his campaign last year alone. Florida’s gubernatorial race is being closely watched nationally as DeSantis appears to have presidential aspirations.

“This is a hurdle that he must clear on his path to running for President of the United States,” said former Republican Rep. Carlos Cubelo. “I believe  even if that requires running against Donald Trump in the 2024 primaries, he’d be willing to do that.”

Florida has among the highest percentage of registered Hispanic voters in the U.S., accounting for 17 percent of the electorate. And more than half a million new registered voters in the 2020 presidential election identified as Latino.

We assemble a panel of experts to discuss the political dynamics in the Sunshine State and what influence they have on politics across the country.

Copyright 2022 WAMU 88.5

Chris Remington