- The Florida Democratic Party announced the ‘Take Back Florida’ Tour on Wednesday, alongside a $1 million commitment to increase voter registration.
- The tour will run from August 2 to August 30 and cover 18 counties in Florida, targeting areas that lean Republican.
- Party Chair Nikki Fried leads the initiative, reallocating $1 million from the party’s budget to boost voter registration efforts.
- Party leaders are aiming to reduce the Republican voter advantage by 35 percent by the end of 2024. The Florida GOP currently holds an advantage of 542,000 registered voters compared to Democrats.
In an effort to strengthen their presence and engage voters, Florida Democrats on Wednesday announced the ‘Take Back Florida’ Tour, committing $1 million to increase voter registration. The tour, slated to run from August 2 to August 30, will traverse 18 counties across the state.
Led by Party Chair Nikki Fried, along with local elected officials and party leaders, the initiative plans to utilize staffers and a revamped network of volunteers to engage with potential voters in counties that show Republican leans. In one of her first actions as Chairwoman, Fried re-allocated $1 million of the party’s budget to boost voter registration efforts, including through grants to local Democratic Executive Committees.
“This tour is about firing up Floridians and empowering them with the tools and training to help take back our state,” said Fried. “Unlike Ron DeSantis, we are actually here – working on the ground and talking to voters about the issues they really care about.”
Fried has stated that her goal by the end of 2024 is to cut the Republican voter advantage by 35 percent, approximately 190,000 voters, according to The Messenger. The tour’s itinerary covers all major metro regions of the state, including Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Jacksonville, Pensacola, Tampa, and Orlando.
“As we reflect not just on the results of the 2022 midterms, but the last 30 years, Florida Democrats must start to act and think differently,” Fried told The Capitolist. “It is imperative to the future of our state, as democracy only works when there are checks and balances, that Florida Democrats get this next chapter right.”
As the Florida Democratic Party’s sole competitor, the Republican Party of Florida exceeded its sky-high expectations on midterm election night last November, positioning itself to hold a supermajority in both legislative chambers. At the final whistle, state Republicans held 85 seats in the Florida House and 28 in the Senate, emerging victorious in nearly every competitive race.
Based on current state data, the Florida Republican Party holds an advantage of 542,000 registered voters compared to the Democrats. While Democrats historically held more registered voters, the tables turned in 2021 when Republicans took the lead. Leading up to the November 2022 election, Republicans maintained an edge of about 306,000 registered voters.
As of June 2023, the Republican Party accounts for 5,263,269 registered voters statewide, while the Florida Democratic Party reports 4,721,471 members. Minor parties and individuals with no party affiliation account for 286,493 and 3,911,131 voters, respectively.
Moreover, Republicans hold all statewide offices for the first time since the Reconstruction Era and a majority in Florida’s congressional delegation.