1954 Florida gubernatorial special election

← 1952 November 2, 1954 1956 →
 
Nominee LeRoy Collins J. Thomas Watson
Party Democratic Republican
Popular vote 287,769 69,852
Percentage 80.43% 19.52%

County results
Collins:      60–70%      70–80%      80–90%      >90%

Governor before election

Charley E. Johns (acting)
Democratic

Elected Governor

LeRoy Collins
Democratic

The 1954 Florida gubernatorial special election was held on November 2, 1954. Democratic nominee LeRoy Collins defeated Republican nominee J. Thomas Watson with 80.43% of the vote.

Background

On September 28, 1953, Governor Daniel T. McCarty, who was elected in the 1952 gubernatorial election, died in office of pneumonia. McCarty's death elevated Florida Senate President Charley E. Johns to acting governor and a special election for November 1954 was called to fill the position for the final two years of McCarty's term. The state constitution was revised in 1968 to establish a position of Lieutenant Governor who is first in line to succeed the governor.[1]

Primary elections

Primary elections were held on May 4, 1954, with the Democratic runoff held on May 25, 1954.

Democratic primary

Candidates

Results

Democratic primary results[2][3][4]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Charley E. Johns (incumbent) 255,787 38.39
Democratic LeRoy Collins 222,791 33.43
Democratic J. Brailey Odham 187,782 28.18
Total votes 666,360 100.00
Democratic primary runoff results[5][3][6]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic LeRoy Collins 380,323 54.76
Democratic Charley E. Johns (incumbent) 314,198 45.24
Total votes 694,521 100.00

Republican primary

Candidates

Results

Republican primary results[7][8][9]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican J. Thomas Watson 24,429 67.89
Republican Charles E. Compton 11,552 32.11
Total votes 35,981 100.00

General election

Candidates

Campaign

Watson, the Republican nominee, died on 24 October. His name remained on the ballot.[10][11]

Results

1954 Florida gubernatorial election[12][13][14][15]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic LeRoy Collins 287,769 80.43%
Republican J. Thomas Watson 69,852 19.52%
Write-ins 162 0.05%
Majority 217,917 60.91%
Turnout 357,783 100.00%
Democratic hold Swing

References

  1. ^ "Constitution of the State of Florida". Online Sunshine: Official Internet Site of the Florida Legislature. Florida Legislature. Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  2. ^ "FL Governor, 1954 - Special D Primary". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  3. ^ a b Florida Handbook 1965-66, p. 364.
  4. ^ Florida Secretary of State 1953-54, p. 304-305.
  5. ^ "FL Governor, 1954 - Special D Runoff". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  6. ^ Florida Secretary of State 1953-54, p. 320-321.
  7. ^ "FL Governor, 1954 - Special R Primary". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  8. ^ Florida Handbook 1965-66, p. 366.
  9. ^ Florida Secretary of State 1953-54, p. 317-318.
  10. ^ "Watson, J. Tom". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  11. ^ Glashan, p. 59.
  12. ^ Cook, Rhodes, ed. (2015). America Votes 31: 2013-2014, Election Returns by State. CQ Press. p. 81. ISBN 9781483383026. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  13. ^ "FL Governor, 1954 - Special Election". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  14. ^ Florida Handbook 1965-66, p. 372.
  15. ^ Florida Secretary of State 1953-54, p. 324-325.

Bibliography