October 22, 2014

Saint Leo Poll: Charlie Crist 43%, Rick Scott 40%

From a press release:

The Florida governor’s election between former Gov. Charlie Crist and incumbent Gov. Rick Scott is statistically tied, according to a new poll from the Saint Leo University Polling Institute.

With less than two weeks before the election, Crist leads, 43-40 percent, with Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie pulling 8 percent, and 9 percent of likely voters saying they are undecided. Crist’s lead is within the poll’s margin of error, and the race can be described as a statistical tie.

With speculation about what effect Libertarian Wyllie may have on the final outcome, Saint Leo University also asked voters to imagine Wyllie were not on the ballot. Given a choice of voting for only Scott or Crist, the two candidates deadlocked at 45 percent each, with 10 percent undecided. A majority of voters say they have either never heard of Wyllie (46 percent) or don’t know enough about him to offer an opinion (11 percent).

“It appears as though Charlie Crist’s attacks against Rick Scott are working, as the race has swung away from the incumbent in the last few months,” said Frank Orlando, instructor of political science at Saint Leo University. According to Orlando, Crist’s lead is still tenuous. “Pre-election polls tend to overstate support for third party candidates. When it comes time to cast their ballots, voters seem to settle on one of the two main parties for fear of ‘wasting’ their vote. It appears that Wyllie is drawing more support from Scott than Crist, and, if Wyllie is removed from the race, Scott gains 5 percent of the vote, while Crist only gains 2 percent and the poll is a dead heat,” stated Orlando.

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Dead heat: Charlie Crist and Rick Scott tied at 42 percent in Q poll

From a press release:

Women and men are polar opposites in the Florida governor’s race, as likely voters split 42 – 42 percent between Republican Gov. Rick Scott and former Gov. Charlie Crist, running as a Democrat, with 7 percent for Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

This compares to results of a September 24 survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University, showing Gov. Scott with 44 percent of likely voters, Crist with 42 percent and Wyllie with 8 percent.

With Wyllie out of the race, Scott and Crist still are locked at 44 – 44 percent.

Men and women just about cancel each other out in the three-way matchup. Scott leads Crist among men 46 – 38 percent, with 10 percent for Wyllie, while Crist leads Scott 45 – 39 percent among women, with 6 percent for Wyllie.

Crist gets 41 percent of independent voters, to Scott’s 38 percent, with 11 percent for Wyllie. Republicans back Scott over Crist 81 – 7 percent, with 6 percent for Wyllie. Democrats go to Crist over Scott 86 – 5 percent, with 3 percent for Wyllie.

Among those who already have voted, Crist gets 42 percent to Scott’s 38 percent.

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October 20, 2014

0ptimus FL poll: Rick Scott tops Charlie Crist 41-40, no Fangate Effect found


Widely reported and heavily mocked, the ‘Fangate’ from Wednesday’s governor’s debate doesn’t appear to have had any effect on the race, according to a new poll from the Republican-leaning firm 0ptimus that shows the contested remains tied.

Gov. Rick Scott gets 41 percent support from likely Florida voters and Democrat Charlie Crist gets 40 percent – a lead by the Republican that’s well within the poll’s 1.5 percentage-point margin of error.

Meantime, Republicans have been outvoting Democrats when it comes to casting absentee ballots. More than 890,000 have been voted and GOP ballots outnumber Democratic ones, 48-35 percent. That’s a better margin for Republicans than in 2012, but it’s worse than 2010.

Early in-person voting, which Democrats tend to dominate, begins today.

Continue reading "0ptimus FL poll: Rick Scott tops Charlie Crist 41-40, no Fangate Effect found" »

October 15, 2014

Tampa Bay Times/Graham Center poll: Crist, Scott tied at 40%

Via @adamsmithtimes

Republican Gov. Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist are locked in a dead heat race for governor in the final weeks of the campaign, and a new Tampa Bay Times/Bay News 9/UF Bob Graham Center poll shows Florida voters think very little of either candidate.

The exclusive poll finds 40 percent of likely voters supporting Crist, 40 percent backing Scott, and 6 percent for Libertarian nominee Adrian Wyllie.

Independent voters have broken toward Crist since a September poll from the Times partners showed Scott leading by 5 percentage points and voters’ already negative impression of the governor have grown even worse.

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October 14, 2014

SurveyUSA/WFLA: Charlie Crist 45%, Rick Scott 41% (still a basic tie)


SurveyUSA's poll tracking for WFLA-TV shows that Charlie Crist is still marginally topping Gov. Rick Scott, 45-41 percent. Libertarian Adrian Wyllie is at 7 percent

But, like all other polls, that Crist lead is inside the error margin. So it's basically a tie.

Still, as noted last week, the trend has favored Crist, especially in the SurveyUSA track that shows him ticking up in support ever since he started advertising more heavily in mid September. Other posts today on CNN and 0ptimus polls are here and here.

SurveyUSA track 1014




CNN poll: FL gov race deadlocked 44-44% between Rick Scott, Charlie Crist


More evidence that Florida's race for governor is dead-even: a CNN/ORC poll showing it's.... dead even.

Republican Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist pull in 44 percent of the vote each. Libertarian Adrian Wyllie gets 9 percent support among likely voters. Among registered voters, the poll shows more of an advantage for Crist: a 42-40 percent lead that's still well within the margin of error.

The poll of 1,035 voters (610 of whom say they're likely to vote) surveyed equal proportions of self-identified Republicans and Democrats, 34 percent, with 32 percent identifying themselves as independents.

The poll might be slightly better news for Crist than Scott in that, because the Democrat does marginally better with registered voters (that is, the total poll of the electorate) he has an oh-so-small extra reservoir of support he can tap. Likely voter screens in polls can miss Democrats more than Republicans and, as a campaign intensifies, registered voters become likely voters.

Still, this poll is evidence of the very definition of coin toss.

Here's the CNN story and here are the poll's crosstabs.

0ptimus FL poll: Charlie Crist tops Rick Scott 41-39%; Wyllie at 13%


The new Republican-leaning data-analytics firm, 0ptimus, has released its latest survey in the Florida governor's race, and it looks a lot like the last survey: a basic tie between Democrat Charlie Crist and Gov. Rick Scott.

Crist gets about 41 percent of the vote to Scott's 39 percent (it's 40.5 to 39.4 percent to be exact). Libertarian Adrian Wyllie is still pulling an impressive 13 percent in the poll. The margin of error is 1.3 percentage points.

So the race is basically frozen.

Two ways to look at the poll (and the other recent ones all showing a basically tied race:

Good news for Scott: Democrats, despite their numerical advantage on the voter rolls, tend to underperform in mid-term elections, when Republicans overperform. If the race remains essentially tied, there's probably a better chance that the Republican will win. Also, unlike in other races where undecideds break slightly more for the challenger, this race basically has two incumbents because Crist is seeking reelection to the post he left in 2010.

Good news for Crist: Crist is winning. And this poll has a Republican turnout advantage of 3% points -- that's lower than 2010 but higher than 2006. If Crist can get Democratic turnout to at least equal Republican turnout, almost every poll shows he wins. Most polls show he wins with a Republican turnout advantage of 1% point. Also, it's important to note that this and many other recent surveys is a robo-poll, which can lean more conservative. To compensate for that, 0ptimus surveys thousands more voters than most (this poll is 6,384) and adjusts the responses to give younger and minority voters (i.e., those who are more cellphone-oriented and more likely to vote Democrat) more representation.

So my forecast is the same: Flip a coin, if it lands on its edge, it'll be the best predictor of who wins the race right now.

Here are the crosstabs:

Candidate REP DEM IND
Scott 64.2% 14.9% 33.5%
Crist 16.7% 67.0% 38.6%
Wyllie 13.0% 10.6% 16.0%
Unsure 6.2% 7.5% 11.8%


October 13, 2014

McLaughlin poll: Rick Scott over Charlie Crist 43-42 percent, Wyllie at 6


Gov. Rick Scott is slightly leading Democrat Charlie Crist 43-42 percent, according to a new poll from Republican pollster McLaughlin & Associates.

Like other recent polls that show Crist up by a point or two, Scott's lead in the McLaughlin survey is within the margin of error, making the race essentially tied. The Republican Party of Florida paid for the poll of 1,000 likely voters.

Scott's big advantage: independents, leaning 39-32 percent in his favor. Both candidates draw about the same level of support from their respective bases and from voters of the opposite party.

So far, about $72 million has been spent on broadcast and cable TV ads that have run or will run by Election Day. Scott's side has spent more than $51 million, and Crist about $21 million. Most of the ads have been negative, dragging down the candidate's standing in the polls.

There's another reason the race is so close: both candidates are essentially up for re-election -- Scott’s the incumbent, but Crist is his predecessor, pollster Jim McLaughlin said.

“It’s an anti-incumbent year,” McLaughlin said. “What’s different about this race is you have basically two incumbents. The real question is, if you’re undecided on Nov. 3, do you still vote?”

Continue reading "McLaughlin poll: Rick Scott over Charlie Crist 43-42 percent, Wyllie at 6" »

October 09, 2014

Rick Scott campaign: we're crushing Democrats in mail-in votes. And they are by 18%


Gov. Rick Scott's deputy campaign manager, data guru Tim Saler, is out with a new numbers-laden memo that's partly news, partly media j'accuse and partly narrative course-correction.

The memo comes as Democrat Charlie Crist is shifting slightly ahead in polls this week. And Saler rightly points out that what really matters is votes. And Republicans, as they're want to do, are dominating. Actually, they're crushing Democrats in absentee ballots being cast.

"At this time in the 2010 campaign, just over 140,000 voters had their ballots counted," Saler writes. "Fast-forward to 2012, and a little over 145,000 voters had made their choice. Today, more than 260,000 voters have already cast their ballots in the race for Florida’s next governor. And who cast their votes will surprise you even more."

So far, by my count, a whopping 265,651 absentee ballots have been mailed back to election supervisors. Of them, 50 percent are from Republicans and 33 percent from Democrats. The margin: 18 percentage points for Republicans. About this point in 2012, Democrats were only down 2.4 percentage points.

Pinellas Republicans, by the way, are leading the way -- with 18,555. That's Charlie Crist's home county, so there's a good chance a higher-than-usual number of these are for Crist.

Still, what's up in Charlie Crist World? 

Continue reading "Rick Scott campaign: we're crushing Democrats in mail-in votes. And they are by 18%" »

Latino Decisions/LaRaza poll: Crist leads Scott 53-29 among Hispanic FL voters


Democrat Charlie Crist holds a sizable 53-29 percent lead over Gov. Rick Scott among Hispanic voters, according to a new poll that indicates this fastest growing segment of the electorate doesn’t like Republican positions on immigration, Medicaid and the minimum wage.

And despite concerns that Hispanic voters might stay home this election, the survey conducted by the premier Latino Decisions polling firm indicates they could be a force at the polls for Crist just as they were for President Obama in 2012 when he barely won Florida.

"There has been a lot of rumbling from pundits that Latino voters will stay home this year because they are demoralized by the lack of progress on immigration reform,” said Loren McArthur, deputy director of civic engagement for National Council of La Raza, a liberal-leaning Hispanic-advocacy group that paid for the survey of 600 registered Hispanic voters.
“When asked whether inaction on immigration means Latinos should turn out or sit home in November,” he said, pointing to the poll, “nearly eight times as many Latino voters say turnout is more important than ever this year.”

The poll, released as the two major candidates square off Friday in a debate hosted by Spanish-language network Telemundo, is the latest spot of good survey news for Crist.

More here