Buchanan, Good Spend Mightily In Final Stretch

Todays News

BY JACOB OGLES SRQ DAILY FRIDAY WEEKEND EDITION FRIDAY OCT 30, 2020

It’s not unusual for Sarasota to at the center of a heated Congressional race. Millions have been spent now in the contest for House District 16, where Republican U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan faces Democratic state Rep. Margaret Good as he seeks an eighth term.

Good through Oct. 14 had spent $2.9 million trying to make the case Buchanan’s time should end. She first came onto the local political scene in 2018, defeating Buchanan’s son James for a House seat.

"The voters of this district are ready for change and that is why we are seeing record turnout and grassroots support from across the district. They want a representative who fights for them,” she said. “In Congress, I will fight to protect Social Security and Medicare. I will work to lower healthcare costs and will fight to protect our water quality. I will treat the pandemic like the public health crisis that it is and will prioritize getting our economy back up and running.”

But Buchanan said he’s been an effective Representative for the region, whether he served in the majority or minority in the House. He spent about $2.8 million making that case to voters through Oct. 14.

“We’re running a positive campaign on our record of bipartisan accomplishments,” Buchanan said. “Twenty-two bills signed into law – under three different presidents – from both parties. There’s a reason I’ve been ranked one of the most effective members of Congress – because I’ll work with anybody if it means getting the job done.”

Good had no problem critiquing the incumbent’s record.

“There is a reason voters support term limits,” she said. “My opponent has been in Washington too long and voters are tired of politicians who say one thing at home and do another in Washington. My opponent voted to strip healthcare coverage from people with pre-existing conditions and gut Medicare. And when the pandemic hit, he cut in line to get $7 million of government money for himself, while local small businesses waited and worried and struggled. The people of this district deserve so much better."

Buchanan in a debate last week certainly had no problem comparing his records to Good’s.

“My job is to go out and fight for our communities on these issues, and that’s what I’m going to continue to do,” he said then. “That’s the issue with Margaret with zero bills and nothing accomplished.”

Good said her own polling shows the race statistically tied; she released a poll to The Hill this month showing her behind 3 percentage points and within the margin of error. But Buchanan has released polling showing his ahead by double digits. FiveThirtyEight gives Buchanan an 89% chance at reelection. Sabato’s Crystal Ball lists four Florida House races including this one, but lists it as a Likely Republican hold.

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