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Can Trump finally win Miami-Dade County? An early poll highlights Democratic worries

Douglas Hanks and Max Greenwood, Miami Herald on

Published in Political News

The low point for Democrats came in 2022, when Gov. Ron DeSantis won Miami-Dade by 11 points in a reelection bid so successful that Florida is no longer viewed as a swing state.

When DeSantis’ presidential run fizzled, local Democrats were relieved the GOP looked ready to ditch a candidate that had recently won Miami-Dade for one who has lost it twice in a row. But Trump’s strong polling nationwide and Republican momentum in local voter registration numbers have revived worries.

“I have plenty of anxiety,” said Dan Gelber, a former Democratic state lawmaker who served six years as mayor of Miami Beach. “Hope is not an action plan. We can’t just hope the pendulum has stopped swinging.”

In November, Biden was more unpopular in Miami-Dade than Trump, DeSantis and Rick Scott, the Republican senator up for reelection this year, according to a 46-page summary of the EMC survey results recently obtained by the Miami Herald.

Meanwhile, the latest report from the Miami-Dade Elections Department shows a surge of new Republicans ahead of the March GOP presidential primary: 4,000 Democrats and independents switched their registration to Republican in January and February, compared to fewer than 1,000 independents and Republicans who switched to the Democratic Party.

“I have a feeling we’re going to have another red county in November,” said Alex Rizo, a Republican member of the Florida House and chair of Miami-Dade’s Republican Party. “It just keeps trending that way.”

 

Miami-Dade Democrats: Joe Biden will win again

Still, Democrats lead in the voter rolls, with a 34% share in Miami-Dade, followed by independents and then Republicans in third with 29%. And Democratic leaders continue to say they still think Biden will win Miami-Dade in November once the general election settles into a choice between the Democrat and another four years under Trump, extending a Democratic winning streak that began in 1992 with Bill Clinton.

“Trump continues to have the same challenges he faced in 2020,” said Annette Taddeo, a Democrat running to take on Republican incumbent Juan Fernandez-Barquin for county clerk. “On a scale of 0 to 10, I would say closer to 0 on the concern level”

Biden’s political team has placed a higher premium on other battlegrounds, like Arizona, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin. But in November, the president told supporters at a top-dollar fundraiser in Pinecrest to campaign to win because Florida is still in play.

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