For Halloween, Steve Schale’s early-vote update memo offers more treats for Democrats, who won Friday by a margin of roughly 5,000 votes.
This brings the GOP advantage to only 133,000 or approximately 5.2 percent. Thursday, it was 138,000 or 5.9 percent.
Compared to the same day numbers in 2010 – the last gubernatorial election, which Schale believes provides the most accurate comparisons — the margin was 265,000 or 14.5 percent. Going into Election Day, the GOP had an advantage of 11.9% or 271,000 votes. Then, Scott by only 61,500 votes, or just over 1 percent in an electorate that, at the time, had a +5 percent GOP advantage.
“I believe we will be under that 5 percent edge before the first vote is cast on Election Day,” he says.
Schale also notes that nearly twice as many Black voters (African American and Caribbean American Floridians) have cast a ballot compared to a similar point in 2010. In 2014, the Black vote was a larger part of the electorate, up 2 percent versus 2010, when they were 11 percent of all voters.
Democrats show the biggest gains in Osceola, Dade, Palm Beach and Broward Counties, four counties with the “largest shifts towards the Democrats” compared to the last Governor’s race.
The I-4 corridor makes up all the remaining top 11 but one: Hernando, Orange, Sarasota, Pasco, Manatee and Seminole. St. Lucie, in the Palm Beach media market, is the other.
Each of those regions is crucial — either by expanding 2010 margins or narrowing the GOP advantages – for a Democrat to win statewide.
No Party Affiliated voters are also proving to be a “good change” for Charlie Crist, Schale says. NPA numbers have grown to 17.4 percent, up from 14 percent at this point in 2010. If this trend continues, he adds, the percentage of the electorate made up of by partisan voters will be lower in 2010, which could benefit Democrats.