PPP: Rubio up by eight as Republicans, Democrats come home

posted at 2:06 pm on August 24, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Florida goes to the polls today to choose their nominees for the general election in statewide and federal offices, and the two men who have nothing to do today are the most affected.  According to a new survey from PPP, Kendrick Meek should easily win his primary over billionaire self-funder Jeff Greene, who more or less imploded over the last several weeks.  With Meek in the race, both Democrats and Republicans come home to their parties — which is good news for Marco Rubio and a big problem for Charlie Crist:

Democrats will get their stronger candidate if Kendrick Meek wins the Florida Senate primary tonight as expected- but the biggest winner coming out of the primary may be Marco Rubio. PPP finds he would begin the general election in the lead at 40%, followed by Charlie Crist at 32%, and Meek at 17%. If Jeff Greene were somehow able to pull off the upset tonight it would be much closer with Rubio at 37%, Crist at 36%, and Greene at only 13%.

PPP’s last poll of the race in mid-July found Crist in the lead at 35% to 29% for Rubio and 17% for Meek. Two major developments have shifted the race in Rubio’s direction though. The first is that Democrats are now going for Meek 39-38 where before they were going for Crist 44-35. As Democrats have gotten to know Meek over the course of the primary campaign they’ve generally decided they like him and that’s cut into Crist’s support for the general election.

The other big difference is that many Republican voters have moved off the fence and they’ve almost universally moved into the Rubio column. Where Rubio had a 54-23 lead with GOP voters in July, it’s now increased to 69-20. Many Republicans were up in the air between Crist and Rubio previously but whatever they’ve seen over the last month has moved them more firmly into the Rubio column.

Other pollsters, notably Rasmussen, have put Rubio in the lead for several weeks in either case.  The change at PPP has less to do with voter movement than their switch to a likely-voter model.  That changed the picture of the electorate, as well has highlighted a shift over the summer that puts Crist in a tough position.  As he loses Republican voters, he’ll need to draw more Democrats, but as Allahpundit noted, the Democratic Party is not going to let Meek twist in the wind.

The internals of the survey show just how large a conundrum Crist faces.  Only 28% believe that Crist should caucus with the GOP if he wins, while 57% think he should caucus with Democrats.  Obviously, it’s Democrats who mainly feel this way — but they’re shifting their support to Meek anyway.  Crist can attempt to run back to his right to bolster his chances of stealing support from Rubio, but after spending the summer running against the GOP, that dive will have a difficulty rating of about 50.

Crist’s attempt to align himself with the White House will also backfire.  Among the likely voters in this survey, Barack Obama has an approval rating of 39/55.  Crist’s own approval rating has gone underwater to 42/44.  According to PPP, he still beats Rubio with independent voters with Meek in the race, 50/34, but that’s not nearly enough if Democrats move towards Meek.  It’s entirely possible that Crist will come in third, splitting the Democrats and independents while Rubio seizes a majority in a three-way race.


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Someone stick a fork in the Orangeman, he’s done

UltimateBob on August 24, 2010 at 2:09 PM

After the first 3 way debate you will see Meek’s numbers crater. I still say meek will be sub 15% by election day. probably close to 10%. Rubio will still win but it won’t be thanks to Meek.

Rocks on August 24, 2010 at 2:10 PM

Hey, why don’t we offer Crist the post of RNC Chairman?

Look, the guy can raise money. And that would be the only difference.

BobMbx on August 24, 2010 at 2:11 PM

Hey, why don’t we offer Crist the post of RNC Chairman?

Look, the guy can raise money. And that would be the only difference.

BobMbx on August 24, 2010 at 2:11 PM

Yeah, but he’d keep all the money for himself.

Doughboy on August 24, 2010 at 2:13 PM

Charlie, orange you looking foolish.

pain train on August 24, 2010 at 2:13 PM

which is good news for Marco Rubio, THE ENTIRE STATE OF FLORIDA, and a big problem for Charlie Crist

FIFY, Ed.

VibrioCocci on August 24, 2010 at 2:13 PM

I was looking forward to this.

taney71 on August 24, 2010 at 2:13 PM

Odd partisan split for PPP (which at last check was the offical pollster of the Daily Kos and has always been noted as a Dem pollster by RealClearPolitics) – 44% R/42% D.

steveegg on August 24, 2010 at 2:14 PM

Barack Obama has an approval rating of 39/55.

And this in a state he won pretty easily in 2008. Mmm, mmm, mmm.

jwolf on August 24, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Did jetboy ever eat that hat, and if so is there video. He should have posted it on youtube.

DFCtomm on August 24, 2010 at 2:15 PM

“Crist can attempt to run back to his right to bolster his chances of stealing support from Rubio, but after spending the summer running against the GOP, that dive will have a difficulty rating of about 50.”

..so his campaign theme song then becomes..

The War Planner on August 24, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Bill Clinton offers the orangeman a cabinet position to drop out of the race in 5…4…3………

Knucklehead on August 24, 2010 at 2:16 PM

I so hope crist is toast in Nov.! Come on Marco and FL voters, do not blow this, please.
L

letget on August 24, 2010 at 2:16 PM

Well, Crist could always be the mascot for Florida Oranges.

portlandon on August 24, 2010 at 2:16 PM

Did jetboy ever eat that hat, and if so is there video. He should have posted it on youtube.

DFCtomm on August 24, 2010 at 2:15 PM

He claims the hat got “lost in the mail”.

portlandon on August 24, 2010 at 2:17 PM

America is obviously not ready for an orange Governor.

NoDonkey on August 24, 2010 at 2:18 PM

FLORIDA IS RACIST!!

angryed on August 24, 2010 at 2:19 PM

Good. I hear the chocolate factory been a bit short-handed of Oompa-Loompas lately.

AubieJon on August 24, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Game over. It’ll only get worse for Crist as Dems go home. Let’s now concentrate on the governor’s and atty general race.

TimTebowSavesAmerica on August 24, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Crist can attempt to run back to his right to bolster his chances of stealing support from Rubio, but after spending the summer running against the GOP, that dive will have a difficulty rating of about 50.

man, Ed, you are really on your game today….nice work

ted c on August 24, 2010 at 2:22 PM

Speaking of Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzenski (see below) on that morning show – they are completely in the tank for Crist. I know , Duh, it’s MSNBC but I thought the morning show would have some balance. Joe is so far up Charlie’s bum, his feet don’t touch the floor. I’m convinced this is due to the fact that Scarborough is hanging by a thread to his last gig and he is ridiculously jealous of Rubio.

Marcus on August 24, 2010 at 2:22 PM

Crist is trying to figure out if there is another party he can switch to in order to win.

The guy would sell his own grandmother for a buck-ninety five if he thought it would get him a vote. Disgusting loser of a pig.

And: GO RUBIO!!!!!

ghost707 on August 24, 2010 at 2:22 PM

chin up charlie, maybe the golden ticket will be in your next wonka bar….Keep peeling buddy!

ted c on August 24, 2010 at 2:22 PM

I so hope crist is toast in Nov.! Come on Marco and FL voters, do not blow this, please.
L

letget on August 24, 2010 at 2:16 PM

With orange marmalade.

pain train on August 24, 2010 at 2:22 PM

Being a native Floridian, which there sure are many of us left I sure hope Rubio pulls this off!

southpaw64 on August 24, 2010 at 2:24 PM

Ed, I ask once again, why are you racist against orange people?

Johnnyreb on August 24, 2010 at 2:27 PM

No worries Crist. Maybe Obama has a position for you. Perhaps…the tan tsar? Hmmmmmm?

capejasmine on August 24, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Charlie will soon head up the Pity Party…..can’t wait!

atlgal on August 24, 2010 at 2:40 PM

I’m voting RUBIO.

Side note, a neighbor had a little party over the weekend (about 20 or 30 people) and handed everyone a piece of paper and golf pencil. He asked everyone to vote and Rubio got all but 2 or 3 votes at the end of the evening. I might add that our neighborhood is fairly mixed racially and solidly middle class. BTW, Crist didn’t get ANY votes from this crowd.

FloridaBill on August 24, 2010 at 2:41 PM

Rubio! Fiorina! Please, pretty please win.

El_Terrible on August 24, 2010 at 2:41 PM

Did jetboy ever eat that hat, and if so is there video. He should have posted it on youtube.

DFCtomm on August 24, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Ease up. He has repented.

CurtZHP on August 24, 2010 at 2:42 PM

Funny, I just saw something on the evening news about how Christ pulled ahead in the poles by being non-partisan.

Count to 10 on August 24, 2010 at 2:43 PM

I did my part and voted for Rubio, today. Also voted for Rick Scott for governor.

SWLiP on August 24, 2010 at 2:45 PM

Funny, I just saw something on the evening news about how Christ pulled ahead in the poles by being non-partisan.

Count to 10 on August 24, 2010 at 2:43 PM

Wow, I know who I am voting for there.

Johnnyreb on August 24, 2010 at 2:46 PM

“but after spending the summer running against the GOP, that dive will have a difficulty rating of about 50.”

And the pool was emptied for maintenance … see, the sign says, “A Charlie Crist Approved Stimulus Project”

Good luck, Charlie.

Dusty on August 24, 2010 at 2:47 PM

Funny, I just saw something on the evening news about how Christ pulled ahead in the poles by being non-partisan.

Count to 10 on August 24, 2010 at 2:43 PM

Wow, I know who I am voting for there.

Johnnyreb on August 24, 2010 at 2:46 PM

Just saying that the evening news seems a bit behind the curve.

Count to 10 on August 24, 2010 at 2:48 PM

Crist’s attempt to align himself with the White House will also backfire.

Looking for love in all the wrong places.

perries on August 24, 2010 at 2:54 PM

Meek is still pretty weak if he only gets 17% in a three-way race.

http://election.dos.state.fl.us/voter-registration/statistics/pdf/2008/2008genParty.pdf

Florida voter registration in 2008:

R 4,064,301 36.1%
D 4,722,076 42.0%
I 2,461,257 21.9%

If PPP’s sample is representative, Meek is only getting 40% of Democrats for now. But once the Dem primary is settled, Greene’s voters will probably rally to Meek, probably raising Meek’s total to around 30%–why would Democrats trust Crist, who is keeping Republican campaign money, to vote as a Democrat in the Senate?

This would leave Rubio and Crist to split about 70% of the electorate. Rubio should start hammering Crist about his betrayal of conservative voters (to take the GOP base for himself), and publicly ask Crist with whom he would caucus if elected to the Senate, so that Independent voters really know where Crist stands. Meek will probably be stronger as Democrats come back to him, and 40% might be enough for Rubio to win the Senate seat.

Steve Z on August 24, 2010 at 2:54 PM

GFY, Snookie. I spit on your political grave, douchebag.

Jaibones on August 24, 2010 at 2:57 PM

Why does Charlie Crist
Want to keep the Black Man down?
Is he a racist?

(Unfair, I know… But it’s so much fun!)

Haiku Guy on August 24, 2010 at 2:59 PM

Glad to see a positive poll on this race. The idea of Crist winning really turns my stomach.

changer1701 on August 24, 2010 at 3:00 PM

The Oompah Loompah is done for.

Holger on August 24, 2010 at 3:06 PM

Count to 10 on August 24, 2010 at 2:48 PM

Crist not Christ.

Marcus on August 24, 2010 at 3:07 PM

why would Democrats trust Crist,

Why did republicans trust Lieberman against Lamont to the tune of 80% or so? They didn’t. The Republican candidate in that race was a complete joke. They wanted a shot at voting for the winner and so went with the least liberal candidate with a shot of winning, Liebermen. From a certain standpoint Rubio is to this election what Lamont was to that election. Why did Lamont lose? Because the Republicans abandoned their candidate in the general election till he fell to only 8% on election day. If the Republican candidate had been able to self finance to the tune of millions he would probably still have lost but he almost certainly would have drawn enough Rs from Lieberman for Lamont to win.

Democrats. and the DSCC, will undoubtedly support Meek but they have no illusions about him winning. He won’t get a quarter of the cash Greene would have spent on himself. The D voters will run from him in droves as election day approaches as the polls show him dropping and he has no cash to counter that with ads. Greene on the other hand would have fought hard right up till election day. Probably drawing around 25% of that vote and assuring Rubio’s election.

57% think he should caucus with Democrats. Obviously, it’s Democrats who mainly feel this way — but they’re shifting their support to Meek anyway.

For the PRIMARY. Crist isn’t in the Democratic primary.

Rocks on August 24, 2010 at 3:12 PM

In a state filled with so many transplanted New Yorkers, it’s likely that Crist’s popularity wasn’t exactly enhanced by his unqualified support for the President’s unqualified pro-GZ mosque position (which POTUS then semi-sorta walked back with a qualifier the very next day making Crist look like an utter fool).

Crist keeps inexplicably shooting himself in the foot in order to serve as Barack’s orange-tinted Mini-Me, so maybe all the speculation is indeed correct: he’s not running to win, he’s just running to get a cushy gig in the Administration.

leilani on August 24, 2010 at 3:18 PM

I thought George Hamilton was retired?

Oil Can on August 24, 2010 at 3:20 PM

Steve Z – maybe you are not familiar with Kendrick Meek. He is a pathetic douchebag even by the standards of the CBC.

Jaibones on August 24, 2010 at 3:21 PM

So, are you saying Charlie Crist is Ralph Nader?

ButterflyDragon on August 24, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Thats not an (I) after Crist’s name in the picture…It’s an (l) for loser.

MechEng5by5 on August 24, 2010 at 3:37 PM

What people who think Meek will be better for Rubio in the general election fail to mention is both Green and Meek’s numbers for the general have been heading down from a high of 21% to 25% to 13% to 17%. Greene’s larger drop is understandable as he has had to run hard get to the left of Greene in an attempt to win the liberal voters in the democratic primary. If he win’s tonight he will tack right and right at Crist for the rest of the election. With MILLIONs to do it with. Meek on the other hand will run a regular old liberal democrat general election campaign in a Red wave year and quietly fade away spending the token million or two the DSCC gives him.

I still think Rubio will win but the numbers will be 46/44/10 with Meek as opposed to 46/34/20 with Greene.

Rocks on August 24, 2010 at 3:44 PM

Couldn’t happen to a better guy. Sorry Charlie!

Mr. Joe on August 24, 2010 at 3:54 PM

So, are you saying Charlie Crist is Ralph Nader?

ButterflyDragon on August 24, 2010 at 3:34 PM

An orange facsimile.

NJ Red on August 24, 2010 at 4:17 PM

Crist has gone pretty much untouched for the last couple of months. We have had some crazy campaigning down here, I can’t imagine what both sides will do to Gov. Crist and he will have only himself to blame.

Cindy Munford on August 24, 2010 at 4:38 PM

Sweet! Rubio for the win!

ornery_independent on August 24, 2010 at 4:38 PM

Good news!

Also, Greene has to have had the fastest rise, peak and fall I have ever seen in a campaign. It’s like at a firework show when one accidentally goes off 20 mins before the show starts, hey look at that…ok cool, now lets get to the real show.

Daemonocracy on August 24, 2010 at 4:39 PM

Rocks on August 24, 2010 at 3:44 PM

I thought so too, but I guess the polling shows that Meek would be better for Rubio. I would rather have the Senate race fade and Rubio become the odds on favoriate because we need to win the govs race and the primary has been nuts. Also, the atty gen race is very important as well. The focus should be on those races.

TimTebowSavesAmerica on August 24, 2010 at 4:42 PM

knock knock:
Whos there?
Orange!
Orange who?
Orange you glad Crist is going down in flames?!!

sonnyspats1 on August 24, 2010 at 5:54 PM

I still think Rubio will win but the numbers will be 46/44/10 with Meek as opposed to 46/34/20 with Greene.

Rocks on August 24, 2010 at 3:44 PM

I don’t see Meek dropping much below 20 percent, since blacks make up about 16% of the population of Florida. They will vote at least 90-95% for Meek no matter what, simply because of the color of his skin.

He’ll pull in some of the fringier of the guilty white liberal crowd as well – my take is that he’ll net about 20-25 percent of the vote in November, with Rubio in the mid to upper 40s and Crist taking the remaining 35 or so percent.

Gator Country on August 24, 2010 at 8:55 PM

R 4,064,301 36.1%
D 4,722,076 42.0%
I 2,461,257 21.9%

The DemoRats include many up in the panhandle who have been registered D’s for years but are much more conservative than your average D. They often vote Republican when offered a Leftie as a candidate.

honsy on August 24, 2010 at 9:42 PM