Jacksonville, Florida, will no longer be known as the largest city in America with a Republican mayor as Democrats report a huge win in the deep red state.
The Florida Times-Union reported that Donna Deegan (D) won an upset victory over Daniel Davis (R) in Tuesday’s multimillion dollar mayoral election. Deegan will assume office on July 1.
Davis was the projected winner, as there are more registered Republican voters in Jacksonville. The Democrat victory is particularly notable as Republicans soundly defeated Democrats in elections across the state in November’s midterms.
Following Gov. Ron DeSantis’ reelection win by almost 20 points, he described the Florida Democratic Party as a “dead, rotten carcass.”
Seizing the opportunity to impugn DeSantis, potential 2024 GOP presidential candidate former President Donald Trump responded to the key Republican loss Tuesday by mocking:
“Wow! In a big upset, the DeSanctimonious backed Republican candidate for Mayor of Jacksonville, Florida, LOST,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform. “This is a shocker.”
DeSantis supporters responded to Trump’s post by noting that though DeSantis had supported Davis, it was Trump adviser Susan Wiles that contributed to the loss. Wiles is a prominent figure in Jacksonville area politics.
Political journalist Collin Rugg linked the Republican defeat to discord in the GOP, writing, “The Republican base was too busy infighting about Trump vs DeSantis for the 2024 primaries.”
According to the Times-Union, Deegan attributed her victory to crossover votes from Republicans and Independents.
“When we were out the last several weeks,” Deegan said, “I can’t tell you how many people from across the political spectrum reached out to me and said, ‘We want you to know, I’ve never voted for a Democrat before. I’m going to vote for you.'”
After her win, Davis promised to work toward unity by creating a broad coalition across the political spectrum to move forward initiatives that will benefit all residents.
“Love won tonight, and we made history. We have a new day in Jacksonville because people chose unity over division—creating a broad coalition of people across the political spectrum that want a unified city. Together, we will bring change for good to Jacksonville.”
Davis conceded on Tuesday evening and will not contest election results.
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