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A new Quinnipiac poll shows Charlie Crist leading Rick Scott 48% to 38%. Going inside the crosstabs of the poll, here are some instant key takeaways.

1. It is very, very difficult to take seriously a poll which relies on a turnout model of 25% Republican, 31% Democrat, and 34% Independent. No consultant or pollster worth his salt is planning on anything close to that in November. In fact, it’s more possible for there to be a +6 GOP advantage rather than a +6 advantage for Democrats.

Mind you, this is not the actual party breakdown of those who participated, this is the self-reported party breakdown of those who participated in the poll. The polling trend du jour is for Democrats and Republicans — more so Republicans than Democrats — to self-report as an Independent. Taking that into account, the sample is probably way off: As George Bennett of the Palm Beach Post notes: in 2010, Florida exit poll respondents self-reported 36% Dem, 36% Republican, and 29% Independent.

BTW, The Miami Herald‘s Marc Caputo has “unskewed” this poll and, after doing so, Crist leads Scott by four points.

2. Because of the skewing in this poll, put aside how the Dems and Republicans voted and look at what Independent voters said. Overall, Crist leads Scott by fourteen points among Independent voters. That’s the key takewaway from this poll, because other recent polls had showed Crist and Scott essentially tied among this demo.

3. Again, taking into account the skewing present in this poll, the trend-line is good news for Crist. In the January Q-poll which also oversampled Democrats, Crist was ahead of Scott by eight points. Now, after several million dollars in negative TV ads from Scott’s camp, the race is essentially the same as it was at the beginning of the year.

4. Cross-tabs and party ID breakdowns don’t make it into most news stories until about the fifteenth paragraph. And they certainly don’t make it into headlines. So this poll is good for Crist for no other reason than the headlines will read “Crist up by 10.”

5. In this poll — which clearly oversamples Democrats and shows Crist leading Scott by ten points — Nan Rich trails Scott by six points. In their individual match-ups against Scott, party-switching Crist does better than lifelong liberal Rich holding on to Democratic voters (Crist keeps 82%, while Rich keeps just 67%). Also, 83% of Democrats say they don’t know enough about Rich to have an opinion of her.

So when the question arises about why Crist won’t debate Rich, a lot of folks in Cristworld will point to this poll and talk about the obvious non-viability of Rich.

Those are my five takeaways. What do you all see?

Originally posted to SaintPetersBlog on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 04:21 AM PDT.

Also republished by North & Central Florida Kossacks.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (12+ / 0-)

    Peter Schorsch's SaintPetersBlog.com is one of the most widely read political blogs in Florida.

    by saintpetersblog on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 04:21:54 AM PDT

  •  Not really an outlier if you... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock, FloridaSNMOM, buffie

    ... Look at the trend lines.  Could just be the line shooting further out.  We all learned in2012 that unscrewing polls is a bad idea.  Instead see this as one of an aggregate. As for the D over sampling people tend to self identify with the candidate they intend to vote for so if Crist is up 10% in this poll it makes sense for the D sample to be up.  That's  why PPP doesn't skew by affiliation at all.  

    •  Yes But We've Known Forever That Not Unskewing (0+ / 0-)

      say Rasmussen polls months out from an election is also a bad idea.

      Question for Qunnipiac is why is their method so peculiar in a direction that would exaggerate Dem strength?

      In many states nowdays a 4% Democratic lead equals a Republican victory. Exaggerating such a "lead" could have the effect of instilling Dem complacence and nudging the outcome to the Republicans.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 05:01:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But - we know there is a reason for this (0+ / 0-)

        methodology.

        Rasmussen chooses the universe of voters they wish to report upon. Censoring their telephone poll data to fit a preconceived demographic-partyID profile. Instead of simply reporting the natural response obtained in the wild.

        Quinnipiac's methodology might be critiqued (solely) for only reporting registered instead of likely voters, but they are in no manner or means skewing their results.

  •  I think Crist wins this as long as the climate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buffie

    doesn't worsen. The bad ACA rollout was so devastating for the climate that it gives Scott an outside chance (~20%) of pulling this out.

    But he needs another shoe to drop for him to actually win,  cause all the rollout did was eliminate the possibility of Crist blowing him out.

  •  This assumes a legitimate election. That isn't (6+ / 0-)

    necessarily going to happen. Republican Supervisors of Elections are already doing things like "consolidating" away polling places in Dem precincts. There is also the possibility of absentee ballot fraud or voting machine programming fraud. I think that Crist is well ahead. Nan Rich is not a serious player in the race, and Scott is disliked by everyone except hard core Republicans.
       But when it comes down to actual voting, plus counting of the votes, the margin will be razor thin.

    •  Good points. Re: Absentee - A lot of FL (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      EricS, PHScott, bear83, FloridaSNMOM

      voters who vote by mail  don't realize that their signatures have to match exactly or their ballots will be tossed ... Exactly! As everyone knows, FL is God's waiting room so there are a lot of people with physical conditions limiting their handwriting ability (I am one of them, severe arthritis).   My opinion is the exact signature match is a pretty convenient excuse to toss perfectly valid ballots.  

  •  seems a little to pro Crist (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bear83, mjd in florida, FloridaSNMOM

    One thing in every poll is Scott just can't get much above 40%, pretty hard seeing him getting close to 50. Also a  lot of independents are embarrassed republicans.
    The Q poll is pretty well respected so I would say Scott is in trouble. also the more they try to depress the minority vote the more pissed off they get and the more determined they are to vote.

    •  The big "elephant"in the room (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      antooo, buffie, donnamarie

      is that Charlie hasn't spent money advertising as of yet and Scott has already blown through over $20 Million, mostly having his mommy stand beside him and proclaim what "a good boy" her 61 year old son is and his bashing Obamacare with blatant lies that have been exposed by our media.

      Charlie recently stated that when his advertising starts, it will be non-stop. Anyone that knows Charlie knows that he's not afraid to throw a punch.  He's been doing this all along with free media and was the 1st Florida Democrat blatantly stating that six Floridian's die each day from our not accepting our federal taxpayer dollars to expand Medicaid.  Scott is a terrible public speaker and runs from the media while Charlie loves interacting with them and with everyone.  Charlie on the hunt and with a smile on his face is going to be enjoyable to watch  vs. the  "avoid the base" and 3rd Way Democrats. (Yeah, I'm mainly referring to Steve Israel with his transporting Alex Sink to my District 13)  As a local from St. Pete, watch Charlie wrap up Pinellas County this fall as he's a very well-liked "people" person that looks out for working people, our public schools and our environment.

  •  Q shines in FL (4+ / 0-)

    that is one of their best states. This may be a little too rosy for Crist but probably isn't off by much, a 5-7 point lead seems reasonable to me.

  •  nice analysis n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida
  •  Crist is really just a sane Republican (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bear83

    But by far the better choice of the two.

    From the 2008 Republican Governors Association

    This party can no longer hope to reach Hispanics, African Americans and other minority groups – we need to just do it. Embracing cultures and lifestyles will make us a better party and better leaders. This desire for inclusiveness is near and dear to my heart... Last week, the American people made a choice and this week, if we choose to call ourselves leaders, if we truly endeavor to serve with a servant's heart for the people who count on us, then we too must work together, listen to one another and learn from the leaders who made the kind of history the American people deserve

    “We can always count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they have exhausted all the other possibilities.” - Winston Chuchill

    by se portland on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 06:31:57 AM PDT

  •  Sane Republicans (0+ / 0-)

    have no place in today's Teabagger dominated GOP.

    Election Day is Nov 4th, 2014 It's time for the Undo button on the 2010 Election.

    by bear83 on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 07:16:53 AM PDT

  •  Napoleon in rags, and the language that he uses (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    antooo

    comes to mind.

    You are basically chiding Quinnipiac for not doing what you want. And, in so doing you come very close to raising strawman arguments - all the easier for you to bat down.

    What you want to see is a poll of likely voters, ideally reflecting a projected electorate in November 2014. Quinnipiac does not report that, and does not pretend to report that.

    Your 1st quibble with Quinnipiac basically sets up the rest:

    It is very, very difficult to take seriously a poll which relies on a turnout model of 25% Republican, 31% Democrat, and 34% Independent.
    Turnout model? When did Q-Poll say this was a turnout model?

    Answer - never. They are not relying on any model whatsoever. The only pre-qualification to respond in this Q-Poll survey is that you are a registered voter in Florida, period. This is about as plain vanilla as polling can get.

    The rest of your analysis (and any other complaints about Quinnipiac stemming therefrom) breaks down as follows:

    -- A poll of registered voters will not tell you who the likely voters are, and;

    -- A poll of likely voters still isn't good enough, it cannot tell us exactly who will vote on election day; we need a turnout model, let's choose 2010!

    The first belongs in the "sky is blue" category of revelations, the second applauds censoring of the data based on one data point some four years past.

    Quinnipiac chose to report on registered voters in this poll - that doesn't constitute skewing of the data (by which complainants typically mean putting a finger on the balance), it isn't an instance of oversampling. Quinnipiac has, in the past, and will doubtless in the future poll for likely voters.

    Basically, Q-Poll apparently feels it is too early to poll likely voters with over 6 months till election day.

    But, what you urge them to do goes even further, you want them to become Rasmussen, (of the left, right or middle) censoring the data to reflect a preconceived electorate that affords you some gut-feeling comfort.

  •  What's wrong with those Scott supporters? Are (0+ / 0-)

    they crazy, or just intellectually not up to making their oatmeal with raisons in the morning, independently?

    Scott's a Medicare thief that plead the 5th 75 times in his fraud case.

    WTF?

    “My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that, and I intend to end up there." - Rumi

    by LamontCranston on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:35:33 AM PDT

  •  Call me Pollyanna, but ... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida, antooo, buffie

    Perhaps the desire to get Governor Skeletor out of office will improve voter turnout for Dems and Ind in Florida?

    We already have the Medical Marijuana initiative.

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