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Rick Scott not just losing the race, but expectations game as well


Gov. Rick Scott’s campaign team thought it had something to brag about last week.

Scott is still losing his reelection bid — but by less than some expected.

That’s according to the campaign’s own survey, which shows Scott loses to former Gov. Charlie Crist by 4 percentage points and trails Sen. Bill Nelson by only 2 points. To Scott’s Washington advisers, who trumpeted the poll last week, it was a sign of progress.

Whoo-hoo! We’re still No. 2!

Bragging about it, however, made little sense to Scott’s Florida supporters.

“I don’t understand this,” said one top Republican, echoing a handful of others. “Why are we telling people we’re losing?”

Here’s why: Scott’s team is playing the expectations game. The message: Scott is narrowing the gap with Crist.

And it’s true. He is and will continue to do so.

Scott has already started spending money on negative ads, bashing Crist a year before the election. It will have an effect. And beyond that, if past major Florida races are any indication, the winner will prevail by just a point, maybe two. The gap will narrow.

But Team Scott didn’t get all the “Scott gains on Crist” headlines it wanted.

“Internal Rick Scott poll: Charlie Crist up in Florida,” Politico first reported.

The Miami Herald a day later focused on the results from a theoretical Democratic matchup in the poll that showed Crist would wallop Nelson by as many as 13 points.

Broward New Times had a spot of fun in a Twitter post: “@FLGovScott's internal polls have him losing to everybody. Even that broken stapler on his desk.”


So Scott isn’t just losing the race. He’s losing the expectations game.

More here