- Former state Senator Annette Taddeo is launching a bid to run for the open Florida Democrat Party Chair position.
- Taddeo insinuated in her announcement video that she would work to restore grassroots efforts within the party, vowing to rebuild its structure from the ground up.
- She also discussed financial woes within the party, seeking to re-prioritize long-term fundraising over short-term gains
Former state Senator and gubernatorial candidate Annette Taddeo made public her candidacy to succeed Manny Diaz as the Florida Democrat Party Chair.
In a roughly three-minute announcement video posted to her Tiktok account, Taddeo explained that her party is at a critical juncture, needing to be entirely reconstructed from the bottom up in order to find success in the current Florida political framework.
Taddeo insinuated that as Chairwoman, she would make efforts to regain the Democrat Party’s statewide voter registration advantage — which it lost for the first time ever last year — and implement grassroots campaign operations under shared values.
“After the 2022 midterms, I received many calls asking me to run for chair of the Florida Democrat Party,” said Taddeo. “I have been having conversations all across the state after much reflection, I’m ready to take up this challenge and do the hard work.”
Taddeo further touched on financial concerns within the party, stating that its leaders need to shift priorities to focus on long-term fundraising rather than two-year cycles.
Florida Politics reported last week that the Republican Party of Florida held a $9.2 million fundraising advantage over Florida Democrats during the timeframe between midterm elections in November and the end of the calendar year.
Moreover, Gov. Ron DeSantis was able to rake in exponentially more fundraising dollars than Democrat gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist in the race for governor. In the days before the election, DeSantis held a 23-to-1 cash advantage over his opponent en route to raising the most money in American history for an incumbent governor seeking re-election.
The ballot for the Florida Democrat Chair is becoming increasingly crowded. Since Diaz’s resignation, political consultant Alex Berrios and Tallahassee City Commissioner Jeremy Matlow, while speculation is abuzz that former state Representatives Carlos G. Smith and Sean Shaw could soon announce bids.
Diaz abruptly resigned from his role this month following months of inward pressure to vacate the position.
“After much reflection, I regret to inform you that I have chosen to retire as FDP Chair, effective immediately,” Diaz wrote in his resignation letter. “It has been a pleasure and honor to work with you, and, rest assured, I will continue to fight with you to get Democrats elected.”
In the leadup to midterm elections, Diaz faced criticisms from national party leader Thomas Kennedy, who demanded Diaz relinquish his role after the midterms concluded because he endorsed John Dailey for mayor in Tallahassee, among several other localized races.
In a sign of party fracturing, the Leon County Democrats publicly backed Kristin Dozier, Dailey’s opponent in the Tallahassee mayoral race.
Kennedy also told Politico that his dissatisfaction ran deeper, lamenting the lack of presence the Democrats hold in Florida.