The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Poll shows wide-open races for statewide offices such as AG

A new Ron Sachs/Mason-Dixon poll shows wide-open races for statewide offices with few voters confident about which candidate to elect. (Here are the findings.)

Take the race for attorney general. Voters are 73 percent undecided in the Democratic primary (featuring Sen. Dan Gelber versus Sen. Dave Aronberg) and 72 percent undecided in the three-way Republican primary (which pits Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp against prosecutor Pam Bondi and former agency head Holly Benson).

The most intriguing figures come in the agriculture commissioner election, where the poll tested the matchup between Republican U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam and former Tallahassee Mayor Scott Maddox, a Democrat. It's a deadlock with Maddox at 31 percent, Putnam at 30 percent and undecideds at 39 percent. (The margin of error is 4 percentage points for this question.)

"The huge number of undecided voters is really where this election rests," said PR guru Ron Sachs, whose firm isn't representing any candidates.

The poll also looked at a few of the constitutional questions on the ballot. It found GOP lawmakers who decided to ask voters to repeal the class-size amendment face an uphill battle. The question fails with just 44 percent at the moment with 17 percent undecided -- a relatively low number that is sure to change as the interest groups crank up the spin machine. It's the same story with the straw poll about the federal health care mandate failing at 44 percent.

On the other end, Hometown Democracy's Amendment 4 is looking like a better bet. It sits at 61 percent approval with one-fifth of voters undecided.

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[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 11:37am]

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