According to Will Weissert reporting in the Associated Press, Democrats believe they can pick up Senate seats in Florida and Texas in the 2024 election. Weissert writes:
Democrats hoping to hold their slim Senate majority after November are looking for upsets in two unlikely places, Texas and Florida, to help neutralize potential setbacks elsewhere.
But that means President Joe Biden’s party’s top opportunities to play political offense in Senate races are coming in America’s largest reliably red state and a onetime quintessential battleground that has moved decidedly to the right in recent years.
Still, with West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin not seeking reelection, his seat is likely to flip Republican. Retaining their 51-49 Senate advantage likely means Democrats must defend their other 22 seats on the 2024 ballot — including party incumbents and independents who caucus with them — while also gaining seats, and they say Texas and Florida are their best shot.
Democrats nationwide have championed abortion rights and are looking to build on gains among suburban women and other key swing voters since the Supreme Court’s overturning of the Roe v. Wade decision in 2022. The party thinks many Texas and Florida voters are with them in believing Republicans have gone too far in restricting reproductive freedom.
Dallas mother Kate Cox made national headlines when she was recently forced to leave Texas to terminate a non-viable pregnancy after Republican officials argued she didn’t qualify for an exception to its near total abortion ban.
In Florida, activists secured enough signatures to put on November’s ballot a referendum cementing access to abortion in the state constitution — following statewide votes defending abortion access in Republican-leaning Ohio and even more solidly red Kansas and Kentucky.
Democrats are also encouraged by Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz eking out reelection in 2018 by less than 3 percentage points over Democrat Beto O’Rourke. In Florida, meanwhile, Republican Sen. Rick Scott won his seat that year by around 10,000 votes out of 8.1-plus million cast.
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