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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Poll: Rubio beats Meek, but not as handily as Crist

10

March

More from the PPP robo poll (MoE +/- 3.4%): No matter how you slice it Republicans are favored to win the Senate race in Florida right now, but how big that early advantage is depends on how the general election candidate field shakes out. The best scenario for Republicans winning the state is nominating Charlie Crist. He leads Kendrick Meek 46-33 in a potential contest because he wins 29% of the Democratic vote and holds a ten point advantage with independents.

The next best case, interestingly, is if Crist were to run as a Democrat against Marco Rubio. Rubio leads 43-34 in such a scenario, thanks in large part to the fact that many Democrats would be undecided in that case. If Crist were to run as an independent Rubio leads with 34% to 27% for Crist and 25% for Meek. Such a bid would work more to the benefit of the Republicans because Crist gets 32% of the Democratic vote but only 18% of the Republican vote running as a third party candidate.

The match up that would produce the closest race currently looks like the most plausible scenario. Rubio leads Meek only 44-39 in a hypothetical contest, keeping it close despite the state’s Republican identification advantage because of a 41-34 advantage with independents.
“Charlie Crist’s road to victory looks tough even if he does leave the Republican Party,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. “Marco Rubio’s rise has given Democrats a much better chance to win this race than if Crist was still the GOP front runner.”

Crist's overall approval rating  is a 35/51 spread. He's most popular with Democrats at a 45% approval rating followed by independents at 29% and Republicans at 28%.

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[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 1:27pm]

    

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