Allen Boyd was elected to the Florida House during a special election to fill a vacancy in January 1989 and was re-elected for three subsequent two-year terms.
In the 1996 Democratic primary for the 2nd District U.S. House seat, Boyd finished first among three candidates with 49 percent but was forced into a runoff with Leon County Commissioner Anita Davis, who had 26 percent. He won the runoff 64-36 percent.
He was elected to the U.S. House in 1996 with 59 percent of the vote, defeating Republican Bill Sutton. Boyd won a second term in 1998 without major party opposition. He was re-elected in 2000 with 72 percent of the vote against Tallahassee Republican Doug Dodd.
In 2002, he defeated another Tallahassee Republican, Tom McGurk, former director of the state Agency for Workforce Innovation, with 67 percent of the vote.