Tags: | Polls | Quinnipiac | Charlie Crist | Rick Scott | Florida

Quinnipiac: Crist Opens 3-Point Lead in Florida Race

By    |   Thursday, 30 Oct 2014 08:06 AM

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist has pulled 3-points ahead of GOP Gov. Rick Scott, as independent voters appear to be throwing their weight behind him, a new poll has found.

According to a Quinnipiac University Poll conducted Oct. 22-27 of 817 likely voters, 45 percent of those surveyed support Crist compared to 42 percent who support Scott. Among independent voters, 47 percent are backing Crist compared to 29 percent for Scott.

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"Independent voters are often the difference in swing states like Florida, but the size of former Gov. Charlie Crist's lead among them is truly remarkable," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, in a statement.

"Crist, who always has sought to portray himself as a pragmatist rather than an ideologue, seems to have sold that message to independents who historically have favored problem-solvers who are less political," Brown added.

Crist's current lead is an improvement on the poll released last week that showed the two were tied at 42 percent. Another poll released earlier this month gave Crist a four-point lead, but other polls found the candidates were tied.

Crist served as governor as a Republican from 2007 to 2011. He made a bid for U.S. Senate in 2010 instead of seeking re-election, but lost in the GOP primary to Sen. Marco Rubio before switching to becoming an independent for the general election, when he lost again.

Shortly after his defeat, Crist joined the Democratic Party and went on to support President Barack Obama's 2012 re-election bid. The party switches have left Crist vulnerable to attacks from Republicans throughout the campaign who have said he's motivated solely by political preservation and self-interest.

"It may turn out that Crist's change from Republican to independent to Democrat branded him as the kind of less political politician with the most important voter group. If Crist can win independents by 20 points on Election Day, he will be difficult to beat," Brown said.

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Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist has pulled 3 points ahead of GOP Gov. Rick Scott, as independent voters appear to be throwing their weight behind him, a new poll has found.
Quinnipiac, Charlie Crist, Rick Scott, Florida
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2014-06-30
Thursday, 30 Oct 2014 08:06 AM
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