Party Leaders Turn Eyes Toward 2022

Todays News

BY JACOB OGLES SRQ DAILY FRESHLY SQUEEZED CONTENT EVERY MORNING THURSDAY JAN 21, 2021

This week brought ups and downs for political leaders in both parties. The nation inaugurated a new President in Democrat Joe Biden, as Donald Trump moved to Florida full-time. Meanwhile, Joe Gruters, chairman of the Republican Party of Sarasota, won a second two-year term as the Republican Party of Florida.

For JoAnne DeVries, Wednesday was a joy to watch. “What a beautiful day it has been,” she said. “Our country can now start healing and moving forward under the great leadership of Joe Biden as our President and Kamala Harris as our Vice President. As we turn the page on four years of Donald Trump, we at the Sarasota County Democratic Party are already looking ahead to 2022, when we have a chance to vote out two of Trump's biggest enablers: Marco Rubio and Ron DeSantis. “

But Republicans had a good year in Florida in 2020 even if the presidency was lost. Trump won this swing state by 3 percentage points, one of just three states nationwide where he improved his margins from 2016. And much of Florida’s successful operation was headquartered in Sarasota County.

“We bucked the trends and really delivered,” said Gruters. “We were united this past cycle and that’s the reason we are going to be successful.”

In addition to Gruters winning another two years as state chair, Sarasota County State Committeeman Christian Ziegler also won another term as vice chair of the state party. And that was after Manatee County GOP chair Kathy King won another term as a national committeewoman.

In the months since the election, which included riots led by Trump supporters in the Capitol and a second impeachment of the president before he left office, the state party has  seen a loss in voter registrations. But Gruters said he will be focused ahead of 2022 chiefly on registering new Republican voters, maybe enough to close the 134,232 edge enjoyed by Democrats statewide. “That’s my No.1 priority,” Gruters said. “We’ve made a lot of progress and that will kelp us ensure Florida remains on the Republican side.”

DeVries, though, said Democrats feel energized now, and will also work to boost their own numbers looking toward the next election. “Our grassroots work begins immediately by building up voter registration, Vote By Mail and recruiting strong candidates,” she said.

Images from Facebook

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