The Latest: DeSantis says GOP beat ‘blue wave’ in Florida

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Latest on the results of Florida’s election recount (all times local):

7:20 a.m.

Republican Florida Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis says he believes a “blue wave” did wash over the state as Democratic challenger Andrew Gillum launched his bid to become the state’s first African-American chief executive. But he says the Republicans were able to overcome it.

DeSantis told Fox & Friends on Monday that the Democrats “turned out way more voters than they did in 2014.”

DeSantis said there “kinda was a blue wave; we were just able to overcome it.”

DeSantis says Gillum was responsible for driving Democrats to the polls in large numbers. He called him a “very formidable opponent” and the “only” Democratic candidate “that inspired anybody with enthusiasm.”

DeSantis also said that President Donald Trump “played a very, very important role” in his victory through his visits to the state and his support.

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1 a.m.

This was the year Florida’s Democrats spoke ambitiously of ending their 20-year journey in political exile in this battleground state. Instead, election results after a tense and bruising recount showed Republicans coming out on top for governor and even picking up a U.S. Senate seat.

After the recount stretched on for nearly two weeks, top Democratic candidates in the state came agonizingly close but fell short of their stated goal.

Democratic candidate for governor Andrew Gillum conceded Saturday, followed by three-term incumbent U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson a day later. More than 8 million voters weighed in — a far higher turnout than in past midterm elections — with razor-thin results in two of the nation’s most-watched midterm elections.

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