In Tuesday’s elections, Collier County voters were clear. The Democrats want Biden, the Republicans want Trump, and City of Naples voters say it’s time for a change.
Presidential Preference Primary
Continuing the trend that began on Super Tuesday, in Collier County as in the state as a whole, Democrats overwhelmingly supported Joe Biden to be the party’s nominee, and Republicans overwhelmingly want President Trump to have a second term.
Most pundits explain the results by what Biden said in an interview on March 1: “They’re not looking for revolution. They’re looking for results.…” Biden’s experience in dealing with large-scale crises like the current pandemic likely also swayed last-minute deciders.
Voter turnout in Collier County was 38.6%. That’s significantly below the 49.8% turnout in the 2016 PPP, no doubt the result of coronavirus-related fears and the fact that the incumbent president is running for reelection. But it wasn’t as bad as it could have been:
The pandemic is a great example of why I always request a vote-by-mail ballot, and urge you to, too. Request one now for the August and November elections from your Supervisor of Elections. And you can still decide to vote in person on election day! Just bring the vote-by-mail ballot with you.
City of Naples Mayor and City Council
As I wrote last month in “Who’s Running for Mayor and City Council in Naples’ March Elections?, “The outcome of these elections depends on whether the majority of voters think the City is on the right track or the wrong track in managing redevelopment and addressing the environmental challenges of the coastal community.”
And by a large margin, they think it’s on the wrong track.
All four incumbents lost to the challengers, who ran on a coordinated ticket dedicated, in the words of the grassroots group Citizens for Preserving Naples, to “preserving Naples unique character and small town charm by upholding the city of Naples Charter, the City of Naples Vision and Comprehensive Plans and encouraging thoughtful city planning.”
Voter turnout in the City elections, based on votes cast for mayor, was higher than for the county as a whole: 51.2% for the City vs. 38.6% overall.
- Naples elections: Heitmann wins race for mayor; McCabe, Blankenship and Perry elected to city council. Naples Daily News, 3/17/20
These were definitely elections where voters understood that their votes mattered. It will be interesting to watch what happens next!