Florida Insiders Predict Rick Scott Will Defeat Bill Nelson in November Florida Insiders Predict Rick Scott Will Defeat Bill Nelson in November – NTK Network

Florida Insiders Predict Rick Scott Will Defeat Bill Nelson in November

More than 200 Florida political insiders were polled, and nearly six in ten said they believe Scott will defeat Nelson in November.

By NTK Staff | 05.11.2018 @11:00am
Florida Insiders Predict Rick Scott Will Defeat Bill Nelson in November

The midterms might still be too far away to be making definitive statements about winners and losers, but a new poll of Florida political insiders indicates most of the Sunshine State’s political class believes Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) will defeat incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL).

According to the Tampa Bay Times, nearly six in 10 Florida insiders said they believed Scott would defeat Nelson, a reversal from two months ago, when 57 percent predicted a Nelson victory.

While the names of the insiders are published, their individual comments are kept anonymous. Numerous insiders shared their fears about Nelson’s campaign and ability to compete with Scott’s operation. More than one suggested Nelson drop out of the race, and trade places with former Rep. Gwen Graham (D-FL), who is running for governor.

“I’m very worried about Sen. Nelson,” said a Democrat. “I think the Democrats need to reevaluate our candidate and Gwen Graham should jump to the Senate Race immediately.”

A Republican had a similar thought: “Bill Nelson’s best chance is a run for Governor. He should pivot now before Scott pastes his face to the floor. At least Nelson would win his party’s nomination. Better chance to win in the general than any other declared candidate in his party.”

Nelson first ran for governor in 1990, and has mulled the possibility in the past (and others have mulled it for him, more recently), but this late in the game, it’s a highly unlikely scenario.

Another insider indicated that Scott, who first ran for governor in 2010 and again for reelection in 2014, is running a savvier campaign than Nelson, particularly among Florida’s minority groups:

“Rick Scott is focusing on Hispanics way before Nelson is. He did this in 2014. He is traveling to Puerto Rico, getting close to Venezuelans, Cubans and Colombians,” said a person registered to neither major party. “Nelson cannot ignore our Latino community and should have messages in English and Spanish. Commercials in both languages. He can not only depend on the Dixiecrats.”

Nelson has benefited in the past from running against inexperienced candidates who did more harm to themselves than they ever did to him. In 2006, he ran against former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris, and in 2012 he faced former Rep. Connie Mack IV (R-FL). He won both races handily, but Scott’s proven ability to fundraise, his personal wealth, and his political prowess is unlike anything Nelson has faced before.

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