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Republicans continue dominance in Florida with DeSantis victory over Gillum

Gillum, DeSantis to face off for Governor's seat in November.png
Gillum, DeSantis to face off for Governor's seat in November.png
Posted at 4:34 PM, Nov 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-07 16:34:00-05

LEON COUNTY, Fla. (The News Service of Florida) - In another razor-thin election, Florida voters on Tuesday continued a two-decade streak of Republican dominance by electing former U.S. Representative Ron DeSantis as Governor.  

As of Wednesday afternoon, DeSantis topped Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum by just over 50,000 votes.

Both Republicans and Democrats saw increased voter turnout during the election.

However, more than 70 percent of eligible voters showed up in several Republican leaning counties, including DeSantis' home county of St. Johns.

Evan Power, Leon County Republican Party Chairman, said turnout shows that GOP voters were energized this year.  

"We are a center-right state, and the Democrats this cycle went a little far too left. It electrified both bases, and Republicans turn out more when they are electrified in that manner," said Power. 

But the state's two most populous counties, the Democratic strongholds of Broward and Miami-Dade, failed to see even 58 percent of registered voters show up to the polls.

For Gillum, lower than expected voter turnout among Democrats proved too difficult to overcome. 

"I still trust the voters, though we may not have all shown up in the way that we thought and hoped that we would," said Gillum. 

Overall, voter turnout for Tuesday's election was more than 62 percent up from 51 percent four years ago and the highest during a mid-term election since 1994.

DeSantis' victory marks the sixth consecutive gubernatorial election won by Republicans in Florida.