Tracking Time – An update on Florida's heavyweight senate race
Bottom Line: It's been a little over two months since I previewed this race (about the time that Scott entered the race) and the reason for the lack of updates has been pretty straight-forward... We've barely had any accredited polling that might show us where we stand as we're still about two months away from our primaries.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce produced just the second accredited poll on Florida's Senate race since Scott's official announcement to enter the race. I finally have enough info to get a credible read on the status of the race. The first change that's taken place over two months ago is the primary picture.
All previously registered Democrats have withdrawn from the race and as of now Bill Nelson won't face a primary challenge. The same isn't true on the Republican side of the race. There are currently six Republican challengers for US Senate. They are:
Virginia Fuller (nurse & former Congressional Candidate)
Lateresa Jones (life coach & former LT. Gov. candidate In 2014 and US Senate candidate in 2016)
Martin Mikhail of Hialeah
Joseph Smith (chiropractor & former US Senate candidate)
Rocky De La Fuente (businessman and former Reform Party Presidential Candidate)
And of course, Governor Rick Scott. Rick's a prohibitive favorite but he does have an election to win before the general. That being said let's dig into where we stand head to head with Nelson and Scott.
In the only two accredited polls released since Scott jumped into the race – Rick's led both. In an average of current accredited polling here's what we see:
Undecided/third party 11.5%
This is an extremely strong start for Governor Scott. When you consider that he won two statewide elections by 1%, a 3.5-point advantage looks like a wider margin than it actually is, especially when compared to two months ago. When Scott announced, Nelson was posting a four-point lead. In other words, we've seen this race swing by 7.5% in Scott's favor. It's notable that more than 10% of voters are currently undecided as both politicians are of course very well known to Floridians and tend to differ somewhat significantly on policy. Until next update...