Burgess defeats Lewis in special election for Florida State Senate District 20

Daniel Burgess (R) defeated Kathy Lewis (D) in the special general election for Florida State Senate District 20 on November 3. Burgess secured 54.9% of the vote to Lewis’s 45.1%. 

The special election was called after Tom Lee (R) announced his retirement, effective Nov. 3. Lee served from 2016 to 2020. 

Ballotpedia identified the Florida State Senate as a battleground chamber in the 2020 election. Democrats needed to gain four seats to overcome the 23-17 Republican majority. As of November 6, Democrats had not gained any seats, with one race remaining to be called in the chamber.

Florida has a Republican state government trifecta. A trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and majorities in both state legislative chambers. 

As of November, 59 state legislative special elections have been scheduled for 2020 in 27 states. Between 2011 and 2019, an average of 77 special elections took place each year. Florida held 24 state legislative special elections from 2010 to 2019.

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