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Amid double-digit deficit, Marco Rubio staff 'encouraged'

So Marco Rubio's losing to Gov. Charlie Crist in the two latest U.S. Senate polls showing a 55-26 or a 55-31 percentage-point gap. Time to brag for the former Florida House speaker's senior advisor, Pat Shortridge. Check out this memo to supporters:

"While talking heads and the media focus solely on the overall margin between Marco Rubio and Charlie Crist, they are missing the bigger story below the surface." Well, we're also concentrating on Crist's massive fundraising advantage and his high approval ratings (even among Republicans).

But we digress.

The memo continues: "While there is still one year and five days to go until Primary Election Day, the numbers have been narrowing over the past 90 days without the Rubio campaign running a single advertisement and despite Marco’s relatively low name identification.  The tortoise keeps gaining on the hare."

"In a May 12 poll, Governor Crist led Marco 54-8.  In new polls conducted by Quinnipiac and Rasmussen, Marco trails 55-26 and 53-31, respectively.  So, while initial polling showed Marco as much as 46 points behind, current polling shows him as little as 22 points behind. While there is still a long road ahead, we are encouraged by polling that reflects consistent upwards movement before voters have been fully informed about who Marco Rubio is or what Charlie Crist’s issue positions and gubernatorial record are."

Download 8.19.09 Rubio Polling Memo