Many polls are currently being released, but the Trafalgar Group data draws special attention since the research organization was the only pollster to correctly predict Wisconsin and Pennsylvania at the end of the 2016 election cycle. The new Trafalgar Florida poll (6/29-7/2; 1,072 FL likely voters) again finds the race much closer than other pollsters. In this case, Trafalgar sees a dead tie between the two major party contenders, with both President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden scoring 46% support among the surveyed respondents.
Recently data from across the country and in key battleground states have forecast a strong advantage for Democratic nominee-designate Joe Biden over President Trump. A new Change Research polling series of seven polls, six stemming from their national polling sample (6/12-14; 1,250 US likely general election voters with subsets in AZ, FL, MI, NC, PA, and WI) finds the President gaining in his must-win states.
The national ballot test continues to give Biden a wide 51-41% national margin, but, as is the case with such polling, the Democrats’ overwhelming advantage in the big states skews the overall popular vote count. Additionally, as we saw in 2016, the national count is irrelevant in electing a US President.
In the key states, however, Change Research, which is a Democratic pollster, finds Trump to be within 1-4 points in the key battlegrounds of Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, and down by seven points in Florida. It is these battlegrounds that will truly decide the November election.
CNN conducted a nationwide political poll (5/7-10; 1,112 US adults; 1,001 registered voters; 302 over sample in 15 battleground states) and compared the national results to those found in 15 battleground states. The latter group included the typical swing states like Florida, North Carolina, Michigan, and Wisconsin, but also added Colorado, New Mexico, and Virginia, places where former Vice President Joe Biden has developed significant leads.
On the national count, as found in most other polls, Mr. Biden leads President Trump, 51-46%, but the numbers are virtually reversed, 52-45%, in Mr. Trump’s favor within the all-important battleground states.
Former three-term Congressman Alan Grayson (D) has had a colorful political career. First elected in Florida’s 8th CD in 2008, he was defeated for re-election in 2010. He then returned after reapportionment and redistricting to win a newly created 9th District, where he served two terms before running unsuccessfully for the Democratic US Senate nomination in 2016.
In 2018, he returned to challenge the man who succeeded him in the 9th District, Rep. Darren Soto (D-Kissimmee). Mr. Grayson would lose that Democratic primary, 66-34%. Now, in 2020, he will again run for the House, but this time as a write-in candidate against freshman Rep. Mike Waltz (R-St. Augustine Beach).
Acknowledging he has virtually no chance of being elected, Grayson says he is running to deny Rep. Waltz the ability to send franked mail during the blackout period immediately preceding the election. Two Democrats filed against Congressman Waltz, so it is unclear why Mr. Grayson thinks only his candidacy would trigger the franked mail prohibition.
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Miami), who recovered from Coronavirus within the past month, has effectively won a new term in the House. No one submitted documents to oppose him when the candidate filing deadline expired on April 24th, so under Florida election law and procedure the race will not even appear on the ballot. Thus, Rep. Diaz-Balart is re-elected to a 10th term by default.
Though it is still only April, and with the candidate filing deadline still a couple of weeks away on May 1st for the August 25th primary, it appears Republicans have their consensus congressional nominee to challenge freshman Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D-Miami). Yesterday, businesswoman Irina Vilarino announced that she is ending her congressional effort, meaning that Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez remains the only major candidate in the Republican primary. This, along with an already announced endorsement from President Trump, virtually clinches the party nomination for Mr. Gimenez and effectively allows the general election to begin early. The Mucarsel-Powell/Gimenez campaign will be highly competitive.
A series of pollsters conducted several recent surveys in some of President Trump’s core and swing states. The just-published results suggest that all are turning former Vice President Joe Biden’s way. Fox News, Ipsos, and Quinnipiac University were all in the field during the April 15-21 period, interviewing voters in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Florida.
The latter state, one of the most important for President Trump, finds him trailing Mr. Biden, 46-42%, according to Quinnipiac University. Mr. Biden leads in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin by eight (Michigan; both Fox News and Ispos), eight and six (Pennsylvania; Fox News and Ispos), and three (Wisconsin; Ipsos) percentage points. We’ll begin observing the numbers more seriously when the candidates are able to resume active campaigning. Then, we will have a better idea if Mr. Biden’s early advantages are reliable and strong.
The Sunshine State of Florida is one of the country’s quintessential swing states, and a new poll suggests that the voting entity is already in toss-up mode for the presidential race. St. Pete Polls conducted a statewide survey during the April 16-17 period (5,659 FL registered voters via automated response device) and found former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump in a virtual tie, 48-47%, with the edge going to the former.
St. Pete Polls does not have a particularly strong accuracy record – they rate a C+ from the FiveThirtyEight organization that rates all survey research firms – but considering the Florida political climate, the results appear reasonable. Chances are good that President Trump’s standing is a bit better here, however. Over the past few elections the Republican candidates have under-polled from 1-3 points suggesting that such could well again be the case.
Freshman Rep. Ross Spano (R-Dover/Lakeland), who is under investigation over certain loans provided to his 2018 campaigns, transactions that Rep. Spano admits may have been mistakes, has now attracted a serious Republican primary challenger. Yesterday, Lakeland City Commissioner Scott Franklin, a retired Navy aviator, announced his congressional campaign.
Rep. Spano issued a statement saying, “…Yesterday, I announced a temporary pause to my campaign to fully address this public health crisis related to COVID-19. I find it unsettling that Scott Franklin would choose to launch a campaign during these trying times.” The Florida primary in August 18th and we can expect this particular race to become competitive.
Voters in three states cast their ballots for the Democratic presidential nomination yesterday, and former Vice President Joe Biden easily won in Florida (62-23%) and Illinois (59-26%), while his victory percentage dipped to 44-31% in Arizona. On the delegate count, largely because of his huge landslide in Florida, Mr. Biden captured approximately 66% of the available delegates last night, putting him on a clear course to win the party nomination on the first ballot at the Democratic National Convention in July. Ohio, which was also supposed to vote yesterday, postponed its primary because of COVID-19 precautions. It will likely now be scheduled for June 2nd.
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