Escambia County saw a bigger turnout for this primary – 57,397, 32.83% – than it had in the 2020 Presidential Primary (53,717, 31.14%) and 2016 Primary (54,658, 27%). The percentage was even greater than the 2018 primary that had more races – 30.76%.
Michelle Salzman vs Mike Hill – Where’s My Star, Mike?
House District 1 Salzman sent Hill packing with the challenger beating him by 1,048 votes and four percentage points.
Two years ago, Lisa Doss acted as the spoiler and helped Hill defeat Rebekah Bydlak, 48.1%-45.2%, with a promise to place a Donald Trump star at the base of the Confederate monument in downtown Pensacola.
This time, 2,377 more votes were cast. Salzman had a solid ground game that picked up nearly 80 percent of the undecided vote in the last days of the primary.
Hill had a loyal following that claimed he had the support of the NRA (which he did not) and the incoming House Speaker (which he did not) and accused Salzman of being anti-law enforcement (she was not). None of his tricks worked this time.
Lumon May vs. LuTimothy May – Don’t Mess With Mama
Incumbent and older brother Lumon May gave his little brother an old fashion butt whooping, crushing him by 6,700 votes and 78 points.
Most candidates in a two-person can get 20% of the voter by merely having their name on the ballot, especially when they spend over $25K and have the same last name as the incumbent. Not Lutimothy.
Lutimothy tried everything – going around his district with a folder that he claimed showed his brother was corrupt (even though some of the people he said “owned” his brother had given LuTimothy, his church and one-time school tens of thousands of dollars, let him use their yachts and even guaranteed loans for him); traveled with bodyguards to intimidate Lumon’s campaign workers; initially claimed he lived in District 3 in his filing papers but had to later admit he lived in District 1; and started a whisper campaign that his mother, who supported Lumon, had Alzheimers and had been tricked into endorsing his brother.
District 3 knew the May family and resoundingly supported Lumon. The district had a 37.5% turnout – 5 points higher than the overall turnout for the county.
Delarian Wiggins vs. Brenton Goodman and James Gulley – District 7 Wants Black Representation
Our polling showed Brenton Goodman had 28% of the vote, he finished with 27%. The vast majority of the undecided (44%) went with the lone Black candidate, Delarian Wiggins.
Goodman got into the race in mid-June, spent nearly $14K and knocked on plenty of doors, but Wiggins had been in the race for over a year and had earned name recognition when he ran against Lumon May in 2016. Simply too much for Goodman to overcome.
Alex Andrade vs. Cris Dosev – No Animals Were Harmed In This Victory
In early July, Andrade’s re-election changes looked dim. Dosev had a nine-point lead due to more name recognition and the support of popular PNJ editorial cartoonist Andy Marlette.
With the help of endorsements from Rep. Matt Gaetz and Gov. Ron DeSantis and the support of the Florida House leadership, Andrade swung the vote by over 31 points – winning by 3,552 votes and 22 points.
Kevin Stephens vs. Larry Walker – 30 Years Is Enough
Challenger Kevin Stephens defeated Larry Walker, who was first elected in 1988 when EC in ECUA stood for “Escambia County.” The race wasn’t even close.
Commission District 1: Jeff Bergosh won with 38.69% in four-man race, distancing Jesse Casey by 7.7 points.
Commission District 5: Steven Barry won third term with 54.72% in three-person race, distancing Megan Walters by 27.4 points.
ECUA District 1: Vicki Campbell won with 59.45%.
ECUA District 3: Larry Williams won with 33.13% in a five-person race, distancing Ashley McDonald by 8.9 points.
Century Town Council Seat 1: Ann Brooks (44.85%) will have a runoff with Dynette Lewis (36.97%).