Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Sunday | October 27, 2002

McBride update

In the battle for newspaper endorsements, McBride leads 6-5, though Jeb picked up the biggest -- the Miami Herald (though how many non-Cubans in Miami will vote for Jeb remains to be seen) and the next biggest, the Orlando Sentinel. The Sentinel blasted McBride for being beholden to the teachers unions and insisting on smaller class sizes. There are worse sins than that.

On the other hand, the Palm Beach Post endorsement provides some incredible ammunition for backing McBride. By far the best pro-McBride article to date, the editors provide a litany of Bush failures. For example, on Taxes:

Mr. McBride favors ending such special interest sales-tax exemptions as the one for stadium skyboxes. He favors reform to create a system that would be fairer to all Floridians. Gov. Bush opposed a plan that would have lowered the sales tax while removing special-interest exemptions, and this year he signed $262 million in corporate tax breaks while eliminating the one-week sales-tax holiday. His tax cuts for the wealthy cost the state about $2 billion a year, or enough to pay for the class-size amendment that he says the state can't afford to pay for.
There's more, lots more, and I recommend you go read it.

On the bad news front, two new polls show Bush maintaining his lead. A Miami Herald and St. Petersburg Times poll shows Jeb with a 51-43 lead, just outside the margin of error. The poll was conducted jointly by Schroth and Assoc. (D) and the Polling Co. (R). It should be noted that this is one of the very few polls that shows the race outside the margin of error.

Finally, the poll was conducted before McBride's powerful ad campaign was launched. Until other polls confirm the results, I wouldn't start panicking.

And the other poll released today definitely doesn't confirm the poll above. This poll, conducted for the Orlando Sentinel and South Florida Sun-Sentinel gives Jeb a 49-43 lead. Granted, I would love for these numbers to be reversed, but ultimately they are still within the margin of error (technically, McBride could be leading 47-45).

Truth of the matter, if anyone thinks this race is NOT tied right now, they are sorely mistaken. Ultimately, this race will be won or lost this last week.

Turnout could be a factor, as Democrats still maintain an edge over Republicans in voter registration. Both parties are focusing on get-out-the-vote efforts, with a heavy emphasis on voters casting early ballots to avoid long waits and possible confusion at the polls. Just last week, the Democratic National Committee pumped $600,000 into a last-minute voter turnout effort.

Unable to compete with Bush and the Republicans in raising money, McBride's fund-raising efforts were focused on getting enough money to make sure his television ads would be seen by voters in the final days leading up to the election.
"Everything is a matter of timing in politics," said Alan Stonecipher, a spokesman for McBride. "It is a very tight race and we are going to have more substantial television in the final days. The DNC clearly believes we have a good shot at this."

Perhaps Florida readers could confirm this, but it seems as though Bush's negative ads have been airing virtually unanswered the past few weeks. If so, the fact McBride is still competitive is quite encouraging. This next week should be crucial as McBride mines Jeb's "endorsement" for all its worth on the airwaves, but GOTV will ultimately decide the winner of this race. It will be a nail-biter.

Posted October 27, 2002 03:24 PM | Comments (6)


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