Time to reel back the insanely premature chatter about Andrew Gillum starting to leave Ron DeSantis in the dust in Florida's governor's race.
On the heels of a Sept. 20-24 Quinnipiac University poll showing Democrat Gillum leading Republican DeSantis by 9 percentage points, a new Mason-Dixon poll shows Gillum drawing 46 percent support and DeSantis 45 percent. It's the third recent poll to show the race effectively tied.
The Sept. 24-27 Mason-Dixon survey of 815 likely voters (MoE +/- 3.5 percent), was conducted for Leadership Florida and the Florida Press Association to qualify candidates for their debate Oct. 24. Also included in the telephone survey were Reform Party nominee Darcy Richardson and no party affiliation candidates Ryan Foley, Kyle "KC" Gibson, and Bruce Stanley, who, combined, earned 3 percent support in the survey.
In addition, a Sept. 29-30 automated (no cell phones) St. Pete Polls survey showed Gillum with 47 percent and DeSantis with 45. A Sept. 17 – Sept. 30 (Be skeptical about polls conducted over such a long period of time) poll conducted for Gray Television by Strategic Research Associates from Gillum ahead 44 percent to 43.
The average of recent polls compiled by RealClearPolitics.com has Gillum ahead by an average of 3.7 percentage points.
Mason-Dixon found DeSantis leading among men by 15 percentage points and Gillum leading among women by 14. They each drew 41 percent support among independent voters.
DeSantis was beating Gillum 54 percent to 35 among white voters, while Gillum led among black voters 89 percent to 4 and among Hispanic voters 50 to 37 percent. DeSantis led among voters 50 and up, while Gillum led among those under 50.
DeSantis led in north Florida by 22 points, in the Orlando/central Florida area by 4, and in southwest Florida by 13. Gillum led in southeast Florida by 27 and was neck and neck with DeSantis, 46 to 45, in Tampa Bay.
Note: This post was updated to include other recent polls.