Florida GOP Sen. Rick Scott now deadlocked with likely Democrat challenger in reelection bid, poll

Scott is seeking a second term

Published: June 13, 2024 9:42am

Florida GOP Sen. Rick Scott is now essentially deadlocked in his November reelection bid with likely Democrat challenger former Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, according to a new poll.

Florida Atlantic University Poll released Wednesday shows Scott leads Mucarsel-Powell 45-to-43% among likely voters.

The pollsters said the results cannot be assigned a margin of error because the some of the survey, taken June 8-9, was done online. However, a poll of that size would have a 3-percent margin, which effectively shows the race is tied. 

The poll was conducted for the school by Canada-based Mainstreet Research among a sample of 878 adults – 18 or older and living in Florida.

In the firm's previous poll, in April, Scott had support of 53% of likely voters, compared to 36% for Mucarsel-Powell.

Kevin Wagner, an FAU political scientist, thinks the swing is, at least in part, the result of increasing name recognition.

“In April, a lot of people didn’t know who Mucarsel-Powell was," he said. "Her name recognition has improved considerably. With that, the support for her has improved. If that trend line holds it suggests that it could be a competitive race.

However, he cautioned about making strong predictions with Election Day still five months away.

“It’s still June, so we’ll see how that turns out,” he said.

Scott is the wealthiest member of the Senate, with an estimated net worth of $300 million. He has shown in previous races – including two successful campaigns for Florida governor – that he is willing to spend his own money on his political efforts, according to the Sun-Sentinel, a South Florida newspaper.

Mucarsel-Powell served one term in Congress before she was defeated in 2020. She’s the leading Democratic candidate but must win the state's primary in August to face Scott, the newspaper also reports. 

Other recent polls including the nonpartisan Inside Elections, show Scott, who is seeking a second term, favored to win. The firm rates the contest “solid Republican.”


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