Florida Joins 12 Other States as Gubernatorial 'Tossups'
Around the State
The latest Rasmussen polling shows Florida's gubernatorial race as a "tossup," with Democrat Alex Sink leading in one heat and Republican Rick Scott winning another.
The Aug. 2 survey of 750 likely voters graphically illustrated Florida's status as a "purple," or swing, state up for grabs by both parties.
And the stakes are high, with congressional and legislative redistricting on the line. Though Florida Republicans have a virtual lock on both the state House and Senate, a Democrat in the governor's seat could prove pivotal in any remapping by lawmakers.
Rasmussen lists 13 states as gubernatorial tossups. Eighteen states are classified as "leaning" or "solid" GOP. Just six states are deemed "leaning" or "solid" for Democrats.
If those trends hold, Republicans could gain a substantial edge in governor's mansions across the country. Of states holding gubernatorial elections this fall, 19 are currently led by Democrats while Republicans sit in the governor’s chair in 18 states.
"Hawaii is the only state with a Republican governor considered likely to elect a Democrat in November. But five states now headed by Democrats -- Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Wyoming -- are seen as likely GOP pickups," Rasmussen said.
The Aug. 2 Rasmussen poll was the first to include independent Bud Chiles as well as "other candidates" in hypothetical fall matchups in Florida.
Sink, who faces only token opposition in the Democratic primary, would beat Republican Bill McCollum 31 to 27 percent, with Chiles polling 20 percent of the vote, Rusmussen said. "Some other candidate" received 8 percent of the vote and 13 percent of respondents were "not sure."
If Scott were the Republican nominee, he would beat Sink 35 to 31 percent, with Chiles garnering 16 percent. "Some other candidates" received 6 percent and "not sure" totaled 12 percent.
The survey shows continued weakness by McCollum, who trails Scott in the primary polls by margins of 6 to 16 percentage points.
Ironically, Rasmussen found that Scott, not McCollum, won a higher share of support from voters favoring Florida's challenge to the new federal health-care law. McCollum, as attorney general, is leading the court fight.
But, in sobering news for Scott, 40 percent of respondents view his positions as "extreme" compared with just 22 percent for Sink.
McCollum's lackluster showing, highlighted in a larger sampling of 1,345 likely GOP voters by Sunshine State News July 26-30, revolve around his negatives. A whopping 50 percent of respondents in that Voter Survey Service poll held a "negative" impression of McCollum.
The survey on Florida's close gubernatorial contest follows Rasmussen's July 21 poll, which showed Florida's U.S. Senate race a tossup, as well.
Contact Kenric Ward at email@example.com or at (772) 559-4719.