New polling gives Bob Cortes 18-point lead over Karen Castor Dentel in HD 30

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Longwood City Commissioner Bob Cortes has taken a substantial 18-point lead over incumbent Democratic state Rep. Karen Castor Dentel in the House District 30 race.

new survey from StPetePolls finds Cortes leading the Democratic incumbent by a 56 to 38 percent margin. With three weeks left in the race, over six percent of respondents say they are undecided. District 30 covers sections of Seminole and Orange counties.

Each candidate receives strong backing from base voters — Cortes with 85 percent of Republicans and Dentel with 72 percent of Democrats. However, Cortes siphons more Democrats from his opponent (18 percent) than Dentel does with Republicans (12 percent).

Independent voters are roughly split: 44 percent for Cortes and 46 percent for Dentel.

In the Florida governor’s race, likely voters in District 30 also give incumbent Republican Gov. Rick Scott a commanding 20-point lead over Democratic challenger Charlie Crist, by 53 to 32 percent. Libertarian Adrian Wyllie receives 10 percent, while five percent remain undecided.

The survey, commissioned by SaintPetersBlog, contacted 331 likely voters on October 14 using a random automated phone call system from the registered voters within District 30. Only those voters that cast ballots in the 2010 and 2012 general elections were included in the results.

The poll has a margin of error of +/- 5.4 percent and a 95 percent confidence level.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.