Express Lane: Is Crist’s momentum real? The disloyalty of Marco Rubio and Dems are absolutely being clobbered in Early Voting.

Charlie Crist’s campaign has been touting a poll by The Listener Group, that puts Crist up 7 points over Governor DeSantis. This poll has been touted as evidence of a Crist surge, which at least in terms of fundraising is real (Crist has raised about $2 million since his debate performance last Monday, and that included a nice haul from President Biden’s visit yesterday). But in terms of voter identification and behavior the momentum from what we can tell is not only not real, if anything the momentum favors Governor DeSantis.

Polls are one thing, but at TFS for the last three election cycles we have moved away from looking at polling and toward the highly-accurate, predictive Nowcast model, Dave Trotter originally built for this site and now has launched as a standalone product with his consulting service. Per the Nowcast model, Democrats are being clobbered in the state currently, but even without his model, ominous trends appear. Outside Charlie Crist’s home county of Pinellas and always interesting Sarasota, the party is being routed. Democratic turnout is decent in Broward and Palm Beach, but it needs to be extraordinary given the statewide odds for Crist. In Duval, Hillsborough, Leon and Miami-Dade its very poor, below the needed levels and in Orange and Seminole its flat-out anemic.

Various explanations can be given for this reality as our Kartik Krishnaiyer tried to delve into on Monday, but the bottom line is, despite better fundraising and one or two polls that might look solid for Crist, he is on pace to get trounced- as is every other Democrat running statewide or in a marginal seat outside Pinellas County.

Marco Rubio will largely owe what appears to be a reelection stroll to Ron DeSantis. Then why is he snubbing DeSantis to appear with Donald Trump at a rally on Sunday? A rally, that DeSantis has not been invited to and has even chosen to hold somewhat of a counter-rally (almost certain to be better attended) at the same time.

Rubio’s evolution from GOP savior, to pathetic, groveling, hanger-on has been a sight to behaold. His now fealty to Trump is a sign of complete weakness and an acknowledgement he has no national political future.

Following the election, TFS will embark on an audit regarding the two-decades failure of Democrats in Florida. Stay tuned for more details.


  1. Steve Schneider · ·

    Maybe The Listener Group poll is documenting a new Silent Majority in The Sunshine State.


  2. Jim Callahan · ·

    In Orange County, the Dems are beginning to make a comeback through the early vote. Thus, one has to look at the combined VBM (vote by mail a/k/a absentee) plus early vote. When one looks at the combined totals, while Orange is still behind, it is not as far behind. Duval County remains a problem and ironically, Charlie Crist’s home county of Pinellas is lagging in early vote (or as Dave Trotter says, “Pinellas is all VBM, no early vote”).


  3. Jim Callahan · ·

    The numbers on Orange County, Florida Dems beginning to make a comeback on early vote. Note that the Democrat’s daily early vote has increased by 2k since 10/30.

    Early Vote
    3,090 24-Oct
    3,049 25-Oct
    3,106 26-Oct
    2,857 27-Oct
    3,140 28-Oct
    2,977 29-Oct
    **2,765 30-Oct**
    3,439 31-Oct
    3,732 1-Nov
    4,269 2-Nov
    ** 4,865 3-Nov**
    37,289 TOTAL

    Source: Orange County Supervisor of Elections website
    (I transposed the data in the “Total” section of the table).


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