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Ed Narain

Tampa Bay

Ed Narain tries to find the silver lining in his narrow loss to Darryl Rouson in SD 19 contest

State House District 61 Rep. Ed Narain admits his narrow loss to Darryl Rouson for the Senate District 19 seat was painful, but he’s choosing to look on the bright side.

“While I wouldn’t be completely honest if I wrote that losing this race so closely wasn’t very disappointing, my faith allows me to believe that there is always a silver lining in any dark cloud,” Narain said in a statement issued to supporters on Tuesday.

According to the state Division of Elections website, Narain came 77 votes short of defeating Rouson in last week’s Democratic primary, out of 37,772 votes cast — a difference of o.2 percent. That’s after a machine and manual recount of all the votes cast in Hillsborough and Pinellas counties.

Narain says he contacted Rouson Tuesday morning to congratulate him on the victory, and says that instead of focusing on the negative aspects of politics, he says he looks “forward to all the good things that will come out of this setback.”

Narain has been considered an up-and-coming star in a political party in desperate needs of such figures. By working with Republicans, he is the rare House Democrat that has been able to boast about a number of proposals he pushed that were passed in the overwhelmingly GOP-led Legislature since being elected to the House in 2014.

“I enjoyed my time in the Legislature representing our community and believe that together we accomplished a lot,” he writes. “It was an honor to lead my peers in the Black Caucus and earn the respect of so many on both sides of the aisle. Being able to pass legislation that will make a lasting difference and secure funding for vital projects was personally rewarding.”

Narain is only 39, and most political observers consider his future to still be bright.

Here’s his statement in full:

Friends,

This morning, I called Rep. Rouson to congratulate him on winning the Democratic primary for Senate District 19. While I wouldn’t be completely honest if I wrote that losing this race so closely wasn’t very disappointing, my faith allows me to believe that there is always a silver lining in any dark cloud.

Instead of focusing on all the negative aspects of campaigning and politics, I look forward to all the good things that will come out of this setback. I’ve made many friends and believe that the results in Democratic State Senate primaries statewide show that Florida is headed in the right direction. Sen. Oscar Braynon is a great leader who will grow the caucus and pick up seats in this cycle.

I am appreciative of all the support we received. From local elected officials, labor unions, business groups and community members — many people invested their time and money to help us win. My only regret is that it didn’t happen.

I enjoyed my time in the Legislature representing our community and believe that together we accomplished a lot. It was an honor to lead my peers in the Black Caucus and earn the respect of so many on both sides of the aisle. Being able to pass legislation that will make a lasting difference and secure funding for vital projects was personally rewarding.

Florida still has many needs and I plan on finding a way to address those again as a private citizen. My commitment to making our state and community better for our children and families will never waiver.

Thank you again for your faith in me.

I look forward to seeing you again very soon.

 Sincerely,

Ed Narain

 

Written By

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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