24 August 2010

FINAL UPDATES: Primary Day in South Florida

Final Updates:
The final results put Scott up over McCollum by 3% (46:43), while McCalister indeed played the role of spoiler, taking 10%.

Update 4:
The Palm Beach Post reports that Scott's lead over McCollum has edged up by 0.7.

Update 3:
In a too-close-to-call race, Scott continues to maintain a slim lead over McCollum.  At this rate, neither will be able to declare victory until early morning at the earliest

Update 2:
Mike McCalister, the third wheel in the Republican race for the Governor, is now polling in the double-digits.  As was the case with myself, he may be stealing votes away from those unhappy with the candidates and tenor of the campaign.  While he can't win with these numbers, he may prove to be a spoiler to McCollum and/or Scott.  Dan Webster is the official Republican nominee for FL Congressional District 8 against the odious Grayson.  Allen West will represent the conservative voice in District 22, having beat David Brady for the nomination.

Update 1:
Currently, Rick Scott is leading Bill McCollum in early results (46:44) while Alex Sink is handily winning her nomination.  Crist, Meek (55:33 over Greene) and Rubio will face off to replace Mel Martinez as Florida's junior senator.  Other Florida results may be found here.  Pam Bondi is leading the Republican primary (with three contenders) to replace McCollum as the State AG, while Dan Gelber leads his opponent for the Democratic nomination.

Original Post:It's Primary Day here in Florida and ten other states, and a number of races are significant for November. To replace Sen LeMieux (the care-taker Senator who in turn replaced Mel Martinez), the Republicans are choosing between Rubio and ... Rubio. Since Crist switched to Independent, Marco Rubio has clearly sewn up his nomination, but his earlier lead over Crist appears to have moderated, who was helped by his performance during the oil spill crisis.  Of longer-lasting interest has been the race for the Democratic nomination between Meeks and Greene.  For a time, it looked like billionaire Greene might have a shot at taking the nomination from Meeks, but his tendency to stick his foot in his own mouth (and possibly the accompanying tendency to stick other body parts into nubile young companions with drug problems) has great depressed his polling numbers.

Florida's gubernatorial candidates are a colorful (read ethically and or morally-challenged) group on both sides.  On the right, McCalister, McCollum and Scott are on the ballot, but McCalister's low-budget, low-key campaign has been utterly swamped by the increasingly nasty-attack ads traded between Scott and McCollum.  McCollum and Scott have been trying to out-do (or possibly out-right) each other, particularly on immigration, while simultaneously calling each other liars.  Brian Moore (whose own sight lists negative news for him) and Alex Sink are vying for the Democratic nomination, but Sink looks likely to waltz to the nomination without competition from Bud Chiles (son of former governor Lawton Chiles), who is running as an Independent.  Sink's biggest issues are her relative obscurity, despite serving as the state's CFO, and her deep ties to Washington in a year where the voters hate Washington's tax-and-spend ways.  The Chiles name is of course very well known in Florida, particularly South Florida where Lawton was beloved, and Bud may prove to be a spoiler for both the Democratic and the Republican nominees.

Among the more interesting Congressional races is the Florida's 22nd Congressional District, where Iraq War veteran, LTC Allen West is running again as the the Republican nomination (he last ran in 2008) against Democratic incumbent, Ron Klein.  Despite running in a district that leans heavily Democratic, West has been successfully attacking Klein as hyper-partisan, and the district is now ranked as a toss-up.

Information on some of the other races and early results will be posted this evening.

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