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15 posts from October 31, 2012

October 31, 2012

2.7m Floridians have voted (30%?). Dems stretch early ballot lead to nearly 49,000 over Republicans

The early vote and absentee ballot data (EV/AB) is in, and it shows that Democrats on the fourth day of voting in-person voting extended their lead over total Republican ballots cast by about 48,600**.

In all, Democrats edged Republicans by 118,000 early vote ballots, but Republicans extended their absentee-vote lead to more than 69,000.

Nearly 2.7 million ballots have been cast out of a total 12 million registered voters, 75 percent of whom will probably vote. That means about 30 percent of the ballots are already in.

There's a dispute between the Republican and Democratic parties about what the numbers all mean. Republicans claim Democrats in 2008 were up by a total of 134,000 ballots at this time (four days into early voting). That number does seem high, and the Democrats say it's not true and that Republicans are playing fast and loose with the numbers.

It is true that total early voting is down by Dems from 134,000 to about 118,00 four days in. But that's not the net EVAB number. That's just early voting. And one of the reasons for the decline is that Democrats have shifted some of their early voters in 08 to being absentee-ballot voters in 2012. And Democrats have closed the big AB gap with the GOP by about two thirds since 08.

President Obama, however, clearly has a problem in the polls. They show him winning the early vote, however he's losing independents. About 450,000 have already cast ballots and they account for about 20 percent of the electorate.

Either way, Democrats are still up. A lead is a lead. But can they keep it through Election Day?

The totals for EV

Party     EV total           %
Dem     517,909 47%
Rep     399,687 36%
Ind     182,016 17%
Total  1,099,612

For AB

Party    AB total        %
Rep     686,671 44%
Dem     617,053 39%
Ind     264,691 17%
Total  1,568,415

Cumulative:

Party         Total            %
Dem  1,134,962 43%
Rep  1,086,358 41%
Ind     446,707 17%
Total  2,668,027

Note: The numbers might be slightly different later in the day when updates are posted. Lafayette County didn't post its data this morning

Ahead of merit retention vote, Times/Herald charts controversial Supreme Court decisions

Three Florida Supreme Court justices up for merit retention votes are being opposed by conservatives, who argue that the justices have displayed liberal philosophies in their decisions. It doesn’t help that the justices -- R. Fred Lewis, 64, Barbara Pariente, 63, and Peggy Quince, 64 -- were all appointed by Democratic Gov. Lawton Chiles, although Republican Gov. Jeb Bush also had a hand in selecting Quince.

The question is: Are these justices too activist and how can you tell?

While about 80 percent of all the court’s decisions are unanimous, conservative groups and the Republican Party of Florida -- which are opposing retention of the justices -- point to specific cases where they say members of the state Supreme Court crossed the line.

The Times/Herald Tallahassee bureau looked into nine specific examples cited by opponents of the justices as judicial activism so you can see the case, how the seven-member court ruled and, when there was dissent, why justices disagreed.

Read further to see the chart detailing these cases.

Tia Mitchell, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Continue reading "Ahead of merit retention vote, Times/Herald charts controversial Supreme Court decisions" »

Mellman/Dem poll: Obama 49, Romney 47 in Florida

Polls are all over the map. RealClearPolics average puts it at Romney + 1.3 pecent n F. Pollster.com average has Fla 48-48. The latest from Democrats' Mellman group:

This analysis represents the findings of a statewide survey of the likely November 2012 Florida electorate using a registration-based sample including cellphones and landlines. Eight hundred (800 interviews were conducted in English and Spanish October 24-27. The margin of error for the whole sample is +/-3.4% at a 95% level of confidence and higher for subgroups depending upon size.

Our latest poll shows President Obama gaining momentum in Florida and now leading Mitt Romney 49% to 47%, with the pool of undecided voters shrinking to just 4%. Among the 29% who have already cast their ballot, the President received the support of over half—topping Romney 51% to 47%. Last week the President was tied with his challenger.

Continue reading "Mellman/Dem poll: Obama 49, Romney 47 in Florida " »

Q Poll: Obama 48, Romney 47 in Florida.

From Quinnipiac University (whose survey came under instant fire from Republicans saying it oversampled Democrats. More here on that refrain):

Increased support from women likely voters helps Gov. Mitt Romney narrow the gap with President Barack Obama in Florida and Virginia, leaving these key swing states too close to call, while the president holds a 5-point lead in Ohio, according to a Quinnipiac University/New York Times/CBS News Swing State poll released today.

By wide margins, voters in each state say President Obama cares about their needs and problems more than Gov. Romney, but the Republican is seen as a leader by more voters. 

On who is better able to fix the economy, 49 percent of Florida voters pick Romney, with 47 percent for Obama; 49 percent of Ohio voters pick Obama, with 48 percent for Romney, and 50 percent of Virginia voters pick Romney, with 46 percent for Obama.

The Obama-Romney overall matchup in each of these states shows:

•    Florida: Obama at 48 percent to Romney’s 47 percent, compared to Obama up        53 – 44 percent September 26;

•    Ohio: Obama up 50 – 45 percent, unchanged from October 22;

•    Virginia: Obama at 49 percent to Romney’s 47 percent, compared to Obama up
      51 – 46 percent October 11.

“After being subjected to what seems like a zillion dollars’ worth of television ads and personal attention from the two candidates reminiscent of a high-school crush, the key swing states of Florida and Virginia are too close to call with the election only days away,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.  “President Barack Obama clings to a 5-point lead in Ohio, but Gov. Mitt Romney has narrowed the president’s lead that existed in Florida and Virginia before the first debate.”

Palm Beach County GOP panic: Dems are "cleaning our clocks" (via WPTV)

There's a sense of worry among Palm Beach County Republicans. They're not just outnumbered 44-29 percent by Democrats. The Democrats are "cleaning our clocks" in both early and absentee ballots, according to a GOP email obtained by WPTV.

The Democrat-over-Republican spread: 54-27 percent as of yesterday morning. That's about 30,000 ballots. And there's a good chance that margin could be even bigger after another day of early voting.

From WPTV:

A memo obtained by NewsChannel5's Evan Axelbank, from an adviser to a local GOP campaign, says that the Democratic turnout effort is, "cleaning our clock."

The memo says, "The early and absentee turnout is starting to look more troubling."

It also says, "Even if Romney wins the state (likely based on polls), the turnout deficit in PBC will affect our local races."

At the Delray Beach early voting site, we saw a Democratic campaign operative, who was handing out sheets printed with the Democratic slate.

"Alright Democrats, you've got your cheat sheet here," said Robert Murstein, a Democratic party volunteer.

Murstein is carrying out his party's game plan.