Apr 3, 2024 - News

🗳️ Abortion rulings boost Florida Dems' hopes

Illustration of a red and blue check mark in the center of an outline of the shape of Florida.

Illustration: Victoria Ellis/Axios

The Florida Supreme Court's seismic rulings on abortion unleashed a frenzy of campaigning among Democrats eager to turn the Sunshine State back into the nation's most important battleground.

Why it matters: Abortion rights have won in every state they've appeared on the ballot since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022, over-performing President Biden and juicing Democratic turnout.

State of play: Within 24 hours of the rulings, the Biden campaign and other top Democrats were rapidly mobilizing — and fundraising — to ensure voters understood the stakes of November's vote.

The intrigue: The Biden campaign also released a new ad yesterday featuring Trump's boasts about getting Roe v. Wade "terminated" — but the spot will not run in Florida.

  • That could be a sign that while the campaign wants the state to be competitive in November, it's not yet prepared to invest serious cash.

Between the lines: Matt Isbell, a Democratic elections analyst, tells Axios that operatives are excited for the "on-the-ground" infrastructure the ballot effort will generate — and its potential to bring "a lot of money" into the state.

Reality check: Republicans in Florida have a staggering lead in active voter registration and a robust political infrastructure, with Gov. Ron DeSantis winning re-election by nearly 20 points in 2022.

  • Florida voters also have a history of embracing progressive ballot measures, such as restoring felons' voting rights and raising the state's minimum wage, while still voting for Republican candidates.

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