The only Republican who'd expressed an interest in challenging him said Tuesday she was dropping out, and Palm Beach County Republican Chairman Sid Dinerstein said he doesn't know of another candidate who will attempt to topple Deutch.
"We don't have one at this point," Dinerstein said. Potential candidates looked at the 37 percent of the vote Republican Joe Budd won in 2010 "and said he did a lot of work and a lot of fundraising and that's all he got."
"Ted Deutch has been successful, effective, and he's very popular," Watson said. "It's hard to find anybody who doesn't like Ted Deutch."
The new 21st Congressional District includes most of the territory between Southern Boulevard in Palm Beach County to Atlantic Boulevard in Broward County, and between Military Trail to the east and the Everglades to the west.
The territory – with 61 percent of the voters living in Palm Beach County – is overwhelmingly Democratic. Voters there went 64 percent for Barack Obama and 63 percent for John Kerry in the last two presidential elections and 62 percent for Alex Sink in the 2010 governor's race.
Dinerstein said those voters are exceedingly difficult to pry away from the Democratic Party.
"Those are Delray Democrats, and not Florida Democrats. That means they're not interested in listening," he said.
Anna Trujillo, a Coral Springs Republican who's never tried to win elected office before, had been running against Deutch as a "local unemployed mom." But she quit Tuesday after failing to attract attention or raise money.
"Every seat should be challenged; however, if the support and money is not coming into a campaign eventually you have to take a step back, re-evaluate and then make a decision. I have done so and the only decision that I could make was to call a halt to the campaign," Trujillo said in an email. "It is unfortunate that Congressman Deutch will walk right into another 2 years of unproductive work."
Dinerstein said he doesn't expect another Republican to come forward before June 8, the deadline for candidates to qualify for this year's election.
Still, Deutch – first elected to Congress in a 2010 special election to replace former U.S.Rep. Robert Wexler– won't have a completely free ride back toWashington, D.C.
W. Michael Trout, who lives west of Boca Raton, is running as a no party affiliation candidate. Trout couldn't be reached for comment by phone or email Tuesday.
Read Trujillo's full withdrawal statement at SunSentinel.com/BrowardPolitics
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