Democrat Patrick Murphy tied with Allen West in first public poll of ultra-competitive District 18 race

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In the first publicly-released poll of the likely November matchup for U.S. Congress in district 18, Democrat Patrick Murphy and Republican incumbent Allen West are tied at 45% each.  The poll was taken on behalf of the Murphy campaign by pollster Keith Frederick among 500 likely voters, with a margin of error of +/- 4.3%.

“Even at this early stage of the campaign, it’s clear that Allen West has a tough road ahead in convincing Treasure Coast and Palm Beach voters that his abrasive, combative style deserves another term in Washington,” remarked Murphy, a CPA and small businessman from Jupiter.  “These numbers confirm what we have known for months – that this will be one of the most competitive and closely-watched races in the country.”

The poll also found Mitt Romney ahead of President Obama by 3 points in the district, 49% to 46%.  Respondents broke down as 39% Republican, 36% Democratic, and 25% Independent in the poll, similar to registration numbers released by the Florida House of Representatives during redistricting.

The polling memo is here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.