Neck and neck to the last hour, Brown with 50% of the votes won the Jacksonville mayoral election. He is the first Democrat to seat in 20 years and the first African American to be elected mayor in the River City.
The race proved some interesting facts. One is that blacks are more likely to vote for a black candidate than whites are for a white. On the other hand, the results appear to overcome ancestral rivalries between local Latinos and African Americans. Hispanics voted for Brown. Though the Hispanic vote has always been disregarded (3.5%), it’s a sleeping giant when tight margins define an election. Brown knew it.
Narrowly defeated Hogan, instead, appeared to have made a decision to not court minorities. He repeatedly failed to attend venues addressing communities that were not his base. I hope Republicans learn something from this lesson.
Questions remain. How difficult will it be for Brown to mayor a city where half of the people didn’t vote for him? How will he gain support in a largely Republican City Council? Alvin faces big challenges: budget, fiscal issues, an active Tea Party movement, and mostly importantly, an ultra conservative Republican governor in the sunshine state. He certainly has some heavy lifting to do. ))