But we have to face the facts here. CD22 is currently a swing district. Congressman Allen West won in 2010 with 54.4% of the vote, and Governor Rick Scott received 49.1% of the vote in the precincts in West’s Congressional District. So, West received 5.3% more than Scott.
Under the newly proposed Congressional District 22, Gov. Scott only received 44.9% of the vote. So let’s add 5.3% to that and we get 50.2%. It’s a lot closer.
We have to remember that West won in 2010 - the most Republican year since 1947. Of course West’s amazing fundraising prowess compensates for some of the negatives that may come out of redistricting – Allen West has raised $4,105,770 through 9/30/2011- and West’s prospects for 2012 also depend on who his eventual opponent on the Democratic side will be. The Democrats campaigning for the nomination for CD22 have already raised a lot of money: Patrick Murphy $1,123,022 and Lois Frankel $1,117,068 through 9/30/2011.
Serious contenders can make inroads in a swing district, while novices with no funding usually fail miserably. Case in point: Even though Congressman Rooney’s newly proposed district voted only 49% for Scott and the current district voted 52.2% for Scott, Congressman Rooney blew away his 2010 opponent with 66.8% of the vote. Of course Rooney raised more than $1.1 million while his novice opponent, Jim Horn, financed his own campaign with $50,000.
Steve Shale, the Director of the Obama/Biden campaign in Florida in 2008, had this to say about District 22 is his take on the redistricting:
CD 22: The Allen West seat. This district switched parties twice in the last decade, first when Ron Klein beat Clay Shaw, then when West beat Klein. From where I sit, it is posed to do it again. First, West already had to gain residents in order to come up to the target population, then right off the bat lost some of his Palm Beach voters to Rooney. This meant he had to gain population from somewhere, and largely that somewhere is Ted Deutch’s highly Democratic and over populated CD 19. If there is a GOP loser in redistricting, it is West. That being said, he is a big fundraiser and hard worker, though I am doubtful his politics line up too well with this new seat.
While we would expect Mr. Shale to write positively about Democratic prospects, we have to admit he has a point. District 22 does not look as favorable under the newly proposed district. Thankfully, as we have stated above, West is an amazing fundraiser in addition to being one of the hardest working members of Congress.
So, what can West’s fans do to support him?
They can visit his website by clicking HERE and help Allen West get on the ballot through signature collections HERE. Under the current district or the newly proposed one, Republicans will need to work especially hard to keep this seat. It will never be a cakewalk for any Republican in CD22, and we know the Democrats are targeting Congressman West.
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