An Open Letter to Karen Thurman

Dear Madam Chairwoman,

As an Orlando-area Democrat, last night’s election results for Democrats throughout the state was an embarrassment. While we get word early this morning that we have lost the Governor’s race yet again, the future looks bleak for our Party in the Sunshine State.

While I understand that there was a tidal wave that swept though the country, the results that we have had under your leadership throughout the last five years as Chairwoman of the Florida Democratic Party has can easily summed up in one word, disaster.

As a Central Floridian, the biggest concern that I have is the constant snubbing of the Florida Democratic Party in the Central Florida region. We have a number of great candidates in our region. Many of them were endorsed by the Orlando Sentinel. Yet, when it came to helping these candidates in last night’s election, the Florida Democratic Party nearly stood silent.

Yet the Florida Democratic Party, under your leadership and others, still believes that we live in the times of Fred Cone and Fuller Warren, and that we still need to “win North Florida”. If the Florida Democratic Party gave just a fraction of nearly the $60,000 they gave to Debbie Boyd to help Leo Cruz, Lee Douglas, Amy Mercado and other Central Florida Democrats, these candidates could have performed well in district that we should win in the near future, unlike North Florida.

While there have been a few successes during your time as Chairwoman, such as the election of Alan Grayson, Ron Klein and Suzanne Kosmas (all of whom lost last night), these successes have been in spite of your leadership, not because of it. These candidates were able to build strong, victorious campaigns on their own, not relying on the Florida Democratic Party for any help. The same can also be said for the success of President Obama in the 2008 election.

After last night’s defeats, which included losing all the Constitutional Offices, four Congressional seats, two State Senate seat, five State House seats and a number of local elections, I have yet to see any progress in your leadership when it comes to getting Democrats elected in Florida.

In regards to the margins in both the State House and State Senate, we now rival Utah as one of the most lopsided Republican-lead Legislatures in the Nation. Still, in the case of Utah I understand, as John McCain won the state by over 28%. There is no excuse in Florida.

Therefore, I agree with State Senator Jeremy Ring. We need new leadership in Tallahassee to help our party move into the 21st Century. Our outdated ideas for running the Florida Democratic Party needs to come to an end.

Therefore, for the sake of all Democrats in the Great State of Florida, and of all Floridians in general, your resignation, as well as the resignation of all the staff regarding elections in the both the Florida House and Florida Senate, should commence sooner rather than later.


Dave Trotter

Editor – The Political Hurricane

7 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Karen Thurman”

  1. Alexander Johnson, Secretary Broward DEC

    I agree completely. In Broward, the party did next to nothing this campaign cycle. I could not even obtain an updated password to access the VAN and had to use the neighbor to neighbor feature on to call the voters in my precinct. The mayor of Broward County, Ken Keechl just lost to a tea party candidate despite their being 12.6% more democratic voters in his district. Democratic State Committeewoman Diane Glasser was even photographed at Charlie Christ campaign events and was featured on his campaign website. When the Florida Democratic Party supports a republican over its own candidate, it is time for a change.

  2. Pingback: Election Reaction Round-Up » Florida Progressive Coalition Blog -

  3. Welcome to the life of a Central Florida Democrat. There are a number of House districts that Democrats have the upper hand in registration. Yet, the Democrats really don’t try at all. It happens time after time. Yes, we get a few diamonds in the rough, like Scott Randolph, Buddy Dyer or Darren Soto, but very rarely.

    The FDP rarely takes any active roll in political campaigns. They have a “you prove to us that you are worthy of our support, and then, maybe, we will target your district” attitude. This is the type of attitude that hurts Democrats time and time again.

    On the other hand, look at GOP candidates around the state that really didn’t have a chance. Even being outnumbered in registration, the GOP will throw money in what are considered “solid Democratic district”. Florida House 49, my former district, is a perfect example between 2000 and the time Mr. Soto took over.

    We need to vastly change our party, and I plan on having a three part series about these changes in the coming weeks.

  4. Also, I guess it is even more sad when the Corresponding Secretary of the DEC of Florida’s largest Democratic county can’t even get on the VAN. That is not good news, not at all.

  5. I agree. I hope he goes for it, and I think the State Party HQ should move to Orlando as well. It’s time for some major changes in this state, or I think we can all (not) look forward to the three little words every Democrat dreads: President Sarah Palin.

  6. I hope you have plans to protect your “rising stars” because word is, redistricting is going to cut them off at the knees. Guys like Darren Soto, et al. will have their districts chopped up into little bits and pieces.