Early Analysis of FL Gov Race

September 7, 2006

This from Political Wire


      In Florida, Crist to Face Davis for Governor

      CQ Politics says the results of yesterday’s primary elections for

governor “suggest that the Republican nominee, state Attorney General

Charlie Crist, may be entering the nine-week general election campaign a

step ahead of his Democratic counterpart, Rep. Jim Davis.”


      Crist defeated his challenger, Tom Gallagher (R), 64% to 34%, while

Davis won his primary fight against Rod Smith (D) by a much smaller margin,

47% to 41%.


      Meanwhile, Hotline On Call notes Democratic turnout was much lower

than Republican turnout. Was it the rain in Democratic areas of the state?

Or are Democrats not as motivated to vote?


RO Note: Dems are emailing me saying the low Democratic turnout just means the Dems didn’t care who opposed Crist. They will still come out in big numbers in Nov. Expect to see Dems push Davis as a family man (one wife, good kids)  vs. Crist – divorced, single guy.

Meanwhile, Jeb Bush, Tom Gallagher and Charlie Crist are hitting the campaign trail as one happy GOP team. Folks, Crist will be hard to beat.




newspaperFrom Miami Herald:


Crist keeps wide lead; Smith gains on Davis


Attorney General Charlie Crist’s formidable lead over Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher in the Republican primary for governor appears secure, according to a poll released Wednesday by Quinnipiac University, but with less than a week to go before Tuesday’s election, the race between the leading Democrats is still up for grabs.

Crist is ahead of Gallagher 57 to 32 percent, according to the Connecticut-based public opinion research group.

But the poll says the contest between U.S. Rep. Jim Davis and state Sen. Rod Smith is much tighter, with Davis leading 43-32 percent, while a substantial 24 percent of Democrats surveyed are still undecided. Among Republican voters, 12 percent say they have not made up their minds.

”The thing about undecideds is many of them often don’t vote,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, adding that many Democrats have ”not been inspired” by the Democratic candidates this year.

The poll showed that Crist’s lead includes voters who identify themselves as ”born-again or evangelical Christians.” Among Republicans, 45 percent describe themselves within that conservative subset, and among those voters, Crist leads Gallagher 53 to 38 percent, although that sample has a margin of error of 8.7 percentage points.

The university surveyed likely primary voters in Florida Aug. 23-28, including 317 Republicans and 312 Democrats. Because of the small sample, the poll had a margin of error of 5.5 percentage points.

newspaperFrom Miami Herald: Big Sugar plays rough in governor race

Jim Davis has attacked Big Sugar’s support of his opponent Rod Smith, and Big Sugar has fought back to the tune of $1.7 million. They are labeling him “anti-agriculture.” It’s enough to almost make me vote for Davis…almost.

From Sun Sentinel:Katherine Harris: Separation of church and state ‘a lie’

“…if you’re not electing Christians, then in essence you are going to legislate sin,” she says in interview.

I can’t make up better quotes for Harris.

Hot, Hot, Hot – 8/23/06

August 24, 2006

Rick's BlogTop posts of the day – CBSNews.com put is on top 10!

  1. Stop Our City kicks DeWeese out of meeti
  2. Powerful new ad for Community Maritime P
  3. Has Mark O’Brien lost it?
  4. It’s late …..and I’ve had too much to
  5. SOC emails breaks the law
  6. SOC mass email – Free beer to who can pi
  7. Park recap…while you were sleeping
  8. Who is stealing Grover’s signs?
  9. SOC declares war…pro-park signs stolen
  10. Blogging in Iran…maybe we can start Be


From Miami Herald:

Building-rule break stands in Panhandle

A state building panel voted to let the Panhandle keep some exemptions from windstorm building codes. Critics say the move will aggravate the insurance crisis.

St. Pete Times:

Candidates come out swinging

Between answering questions on insurance and property taxes, the pair pepper each other with accusations of liberalism and ethical slips.


August 21, 2006

Escambia County Election Supervisor David Stafford has opened three polling places for voting today thru Saturday, Sept. 2:

Supervisor of Elections Main Office, 213 Palafox Place 2nd Floor

Southwest Branch Library, 12248 Gulf Beach Highway

Lucia M. Tryon Branch Library, 5740 North 9th Avenue

Early voting will be offered at each of these locations Monday through Saturday, from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Early voters will cast their ballots on the county’s new iVotronic touch screen voting machines, and can choose any one of the three sites.

Rick's BlogThe hottest posts over the weekend.

  1. Port Royal Cocktail Party Buzz

  2. Latest Touart and Whitehead power grap

  3. Did Elebash write Johns’ viewpoint?

  4. Crist pops out of Barkley House

  5. Review of Sunday papers across the state

  6. BSoc Scorecard – 8/19/06 am

  7. David Letterman joins BSoc

  8. IN YOUR HEAD RADIO still rocks

  9. Kathy can’t pack ‘em in like Charlie

  10. From Slate: Washington Buzz for week ended 8/18/06

newspaperSunday Papers:

Miami Herald sees the Sept. primary as a vote on the Jeb Bush legacy: 06 Primary: The Florida vote

St. Pete Times analyses the Davis vs. Smith race: Davis vs. Smith a hard sell in S. Fla.

South Florida Sun-Sentinel looks a condo boom going bust: Rampant overbuilding means condo boom may go bust
So does Orlando Sentinel: Soaring condo plans come down to earth.

(RO NOTE: Could it be Mark O’Brien and others plans to replace CMP plan with condos really might not work?)

Sarasota Herald Tribune -Property owners in Charlotte, Manatee and Sarasota counties are facing a $300 million tax increase this year, fueled by last year’s real estate boom.To rebate or spend windfall?

(RO Note: Okaloosa County is the only one up here that is lowering property taxes)

And the PNJ does a solid job of reviewing the Community Maritime Park vote: A city divided; Project opponents say funds from CRA would serve better purpose elsewhere; Funding from public, private contributions.

HarrisThe Orlando Sentinel reports that a Thursday rally for Katherine Harris (GOP Congresswomen running for her party’s nomination against Dem. Sen. Bill Nelson) at the Orlando Airport went flat when none of the politicians listed on the flyer showed up.  No shows

To make matters worse the names of several high-profile GOP leaders and their endorsements of Harris have been deleted from Harris’ campaign web-site –  U.S. Reps. Mark Foley, Ginny Brown-Waite, Cliff Stearns and our Congressman Jeff Miller.

newspaperFrom Miami Herald

Bad blood in GOP race spurs game of chicken


The debate dates are falling through, the gloves are coming off — and the chicken suits are coming out in Florida’s toughest Senate race.

On Monday, Sen. Alex Villalobos and challenger Frank Bolaños couldn’t agree to debate at Miami-Dade’s Republican Executive Committee this week — prompting the Bolaños camp to buy a $180 chicken suit that they plan to have a supporter wear to mock Villalobos at public functions.

The failed debate negotiations came as Gov. Jeb Bush endorsed Bolaños. At issue for Bush, who once spoke highly of Villalobos: class size and publicly funded vouchers for private-school students, two Bush legacy issues that Villalobos helped scuttle in the Legislature, earning him the support of the teachers’ union.


Villalobos said he wants to debate Bolaños at community events in the West Dade district. But Bolaños supporters, who already had a bad experience at a Kendall event packed with Villalobos supporters, say they want a forum with just Republicans, said Bolaños spokesman Michael Caputo, who bought the chicken suit after failing to reach a deal with Villalobos strategist David Custin.

Each side blamed the other for the impasse. Said Mary Ellen Miller, the Republican Executive Committee’s county chairwoman, “It was a lot of misunderstanding. We just couldn’t get beyond it.”

Even without a full debate, shorter joint appearances have led to sometimes bitter exchanges as the Sept. 5 primary draws closer.

At a meeting Monday with The Miami Herald’s editorial board, the two clashed over Villalobos’ votes on class size and school vouchers. They also have argued about which candidate is ”the real Republican.” Villalobos’ votes led to the loss of his state Senate leadership position.

”I think the very difficult situation he’s in is not because of class size,” Bolaños said Monday. “It was because of his raw aspiration for power.”


Bolaños then said the class-size law “should not be repealed…. I will support the implementation of the class size.”

Villalobos, who called Bolaños ”very hypocritical,” said he voted on class size in the Senate the way he did because his district supports the class limits.

”You know what being a good Republican is?” Villalobos said. “It’s having principles.”

Miami Herald staff writer Marc Caputo contributed to this report.