The Miami Herald
Without President Barack Obama on the ticket, something weird happens to the Florida Democratic Party and its candidates in big mid-term elections: They lose swing races. Though this was a special election in a mid-term year, the pattern remains.
Both Democrats and the GOP had plowed millions of dollars into the race in the hopes it would give them a boost heading into the midterms. The GOP, which focused its attacks on linking (Alex) Sink to Obamacare, managed to win with an untested candidate that many in the national party had grown frustrated with.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/03/david-jolly-alex-sink-florida-special-election-2014-104543.html#ixzz2vhiQ6984
The Washington Post
Jolly's win in a Gulf Coast district just west of Tampa illustrated the political toxicity of the law known as Obamacare. Jolly favored repealing and replacing the law, which was a central focus of the campaign, while his Democratic opponent did not. The law's botched rollout has heightened Democrats' anxiety eight months before the midterm elections. The Florida result is likely to raise their concerns.
The New York Times
The special election to replace Representative C. W. Bill Young, a Republican who held the seat for more than 40 years, may offer a hint at how Republicans and Democrats will do in midterm races this year. The campaign had largely been commandeered by national political organizations that are waging a proxy battle over issues such as the president’s health care program and Social Security.
Tampa Bay Times
It was a deflating moment for Democrats, who were already facing a tough November and saw in Sink a buffer from the health care attacks. And it was a crushing blow to Sink, the former state CFO who narrowly lost her 2010 race for governor to political rookie millionaire Rick Scott.
The battle for Florida's 13th District seat is a prequel of sorts to the national fight this year over who controls Congress in the last two years of Obama's final presidential term. The House is expected to remain under Republican control. But in the Senate, Republicans are hoping to leverage Obama's unpopularity and his health care law's wobbly start to gain the six seats required to control the 100-member chamber.
While a contest this far out from the midterms rarely offers a preview of what will actually happen in November, the election was seen by some pundits as a potential bellwether.