NYT REGIONAL NEWSPAPER GROUP FLORIDA POLL SHOWS NELSON SEEMINGLY UNCATCHABLE; CRIST WITH BIGGER LEAD THAN MOST OTHER RECENT POLLS
The Florida Poll, conducted by the New York Times Regional Newspaper Group in Florida October 28 - November 2 of 500 registered voters determined to be "likely voters" through a series of questions about their voting habits, shows that incumbant Democratic U.S. Senator Bill Nelson has a 21 point lead over Republican challenger Congresswoman Katherine Harris, which with only two days remaining before Election Day would seem to be an insurmountable barrier for the Bartow native to reach.
Nelson was shown the support of 51 percent of the respondents, while Harris only received 30 percent. There were 16 percent undecided, and three percent said they would like support one of the other candidates in the race (there are six other independent or write-in candidates who qualified).
Among Democrats, Nelson enjoys the support of 73 percent of those surveyed, while Ms. Harris could only garner nine percent. As for Republicans, Ms. Harris has the support of only 57 percent, with Nelson claiming 30 percent of registered Republicans who responded. With independents, Nelson has support of 47 percent, compared to 21 percent for Harris and 26 percent undecided with six percent saying they would vote for other candidates.
In the gubenatorial race, the Florida Poll shows Republican Attorney General Charlie Crist with a 14 percent lead over Democratic Congressman Jim Davis, much larger than several other recently released polls:
Charlie Crist (R): 49%
Jim Davis (D): 35%
Other candidates: 3%
Crist seems to be enjoying a big advantage among crossover voters, as the survey shows he has 25% support among Democrats, compared with only nine percent of Republicans saying they are backing Davis. Among undecided voters, about 19 percent say they are leaning toward Davis, with 11 percent say they are leaning toward Crist and 70 percent claiming they are far from making a decision.
The telephone numbers used in the survey were formed at random by a computer programme to ensure that each area of the state was represented to its population. The results were weighted to ensure that party registration and gender were represented in proportion to their true populations in the state.
The New York Times Regional Newspaper Group publications in Florida are:
The Gainesville Sun
The Lakeland Ledger
The Ocala Star-Banner
The Sarasota Herald Tribune
The Florida Poll is headed by Lakeland Ledger political columnist Bill Rufty.