Bill Nelson, Rick Scott trades last minute punches


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It seems that the younger voters will be one of the key decision makers in these midterm elections. Nick Cardona of Veuer analyzes the most recent poll data.
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WASHINGTON – After millions of dollars, thousands of television commercials and many bruises of personal assaults, the Florida race that had nationally watched the Senate Senate between the democratic founding Bill Nelson and the GOP Gov. Rick Scott is right from where he started months ago: a virtual toss.

When Scott officially launched the race in April, announcing that he would challenge Nelson, the contest had already been formed by three powers: President Donald Trump's shadow for the state after his election in 2016, the arrival of thousands of Puerto Ricans in Florida after the ruin of Hurricane Maria last year and the massacre of the Parkland artillery at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas Lyceum in February .

These factors are still in progress, but others are full of the agenda, including the crisis of the state's red response, the impact of Hurricane Michael and an intergovernmental struggle at the top of the state ticket featuring wild guerrillas who have triggered their bases.

The way in which these issues will be put to a state known for the forthcoming elections is to be discussed. But most predict – what else? – another fine finish on Tuesday in a race with what might be the highest participation for a mid-term election since 1994.

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"It's Florida," said Ron Piers, a Republican lobbyist based in Tampa. "We are so different and every time there is a very competitive race like this, I think you will continue to see very close fights. This is not new. "

Senate control is in jeopardy

Most polls show Nelson firmly, but usually within the margin of error.

Although playing the undercard in the Governor's main event between Republican Ron DeSantis and Democrat Andrew Gillum, the matchup between Scott and Nelson has national implications.

Republicans control 51 of the 100 seats in the room, so Democrats need a clean two-seat gain to reoccupy the cabin, and holding Nelson's headquarters is considered crucial.

Florida is one of the Senate's ten seats – four held by Republicans, six Democrats – which are considered more competitive than the nation, according to the non-politicized Cook Policy Report.

The party that controls the Senate will not only be able to direct the legislative program to Capitol Hill but will decide on the future of Trump's executive branch and law suit. If there is another opening to the Supreme Court, senators will be able to confirm or reject the presidential candidate by a simple majority.

High turnout

Florida voters are already in large numbers in the first and absent votes.

The turnout for the first elections in August was 27 percent, nine points higher than 2014 and the highest median membership since 2002. Experts say early-warning indicators suggest that Tuesday's turnout should correspond – if not the eclipse – 55% The average was 51%.

Since Friday morning, more than 4 million of the approximately 13 million state voters have voted, according to state records. Another 1.3 million ballot papers have been requested but have not been returned. So far, Republicans have a small advantage to those who have already voted.

Experts say it is not clear who is helped by high turnout because the party loyal to both sides is deeply committed.

Democrats generally work well when attendance increases due to their traditional elections – college, minority and low-income voters. They tend not to vote in the mid-term elections.

But Trump brings voters to Scott, who usually stay in the middle, while 39-year-old Gillum, struggling to be only the third elected black ruler in US history, attracts young and minority voters, said Susan MacManus, of Science at the University of South Florida.

"It brings a new face, a younger person, racial diversity, links stronger to those most liberal in economic and social matters," he said.

Senator Bill Nelson and Governor Rick Scott manipulate the Senate's first debate in Miramar, FL on Tuesday. (Photo: Ivan Apfel for NBCUniversal / Telemundo)

Democratic consultant Steve Schale, who led the Obama / Biden campaign in 2008, said a worrying trend for Nelson is the low voter turnout among the Spaniards, which make up 16% of all voters.

"It feels a lot of Cuba right now," he said referring to hundreds of thousands of Cubans in Miami, who are bent to the Republicans.

What is potentially worrying, he said, is that the more progressive Spanish-speakers in other parts of the state who could push Nelson, especially the Puerto Ricans in the Orlando area, have not yet been high.

Strength Factor

Democrats did the best to connect Scott with Trump – and there is plenty of material.

Scott was one of the first prominent Republican politicians in the nation to embrace Trump's candidacy in 2016. The Florida governor raised money for the New York mogul, hosted a kick-off party after winning and visiting the White House last year for to see his friend. He also conducted the new Democratic Super PAC, the pro-Trump committee that raised money for the campaign in 2016.

Since starting to run for the Senate, Scott has mitigated his relationship with the president, especially considering Trump's attacks on the Spaniards and the suppression of immigration. About one in six voters in the sunshine situation is Hispanic.

President Troubha and Florida Governor Rick Scott left, visiting Lynn Haven, Fla. (Photo: RICARDO ROLON, News-Press via USA TODAY)

A Spanish-language Scott advertisement released in September tried to stay away from the president.

"When I do not agree with what President Trump says or says, I have said," Scott starts in Spanish. "My only commitment is with you".

But the move away from the Trump, which collapsed for Scott and other Republicans on Wednesday, also has its drawback.

Polls show that he enjoys relatively dignified approval numbers and won the state, albeit closely, two years ago in a presidential campaign where two of Florida's beloved Florida sons were persecuted: ex-governor Jeb Bush and senator Marco Rubio.

More: Florida's Senator Bill Nelson Challenge: Winning votes in the counties "Trump"

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Each one faces their toughest struggle

In Scott, Nelson, 76, faces his toughest Senator in the Senate: a well-known, double-faced governor who has spent over $ 80 million in his fortune to win two government elections.

The governor has already given his $ 51 million campaign to defeat Nelson from October 17 and is expected to open his wallet more in the last days of the campaign.

By October 17, both have spent a total of $ 92 million, with Scott redeeming about $ 7 with Nelson's $ 3, according to Federal Election Commission records. In addition, outside teams have spent more than $ 10 million helping Scott and over $ 11 million by helping Nelson, according to the FEC records.

Scott's approval numbers among Florida voters steadily increased. Although only in the mid-19's in many polls, he is among the highest of his eight-year tenure as governor.

In Nelson, Scott, 65, faces an opponent who won five consecutive state elections, including the last three for a senator.

And while Scott never won 50 percent in a hunting breed, Nelson won decisively his last re-election by 13 percentage points.

In addition, it has created a picture of political centering rather than an increasingly party Congress and several high-level polls with its party over the past few years adopting the Law on Affordable Health Care, opposed to the Bill on the benefits of Trump and voting last month against the Supreme Court candidate Brett Cavana.

Known products

The attacks of both candidates against the other were relentless and sharp. Almost all of these platforms have been launched in TV and digital ads, which were repeated in one debate last month.

Nelson is portrayed as the leader of the democratic mechanism, who has not shown public office for his decades, and overcame multiple votes this autumn instead of representing his voters in Capitol Hill.

"It's been over for 42 years," and he has done nothing, Scott said during a talk broadcast by Telemundo 51 / WSCV, a Spanish-language television station in Miami.

Scott is painted as a sophisticated politician whose ruling as a ruler to reject Medicaid's expansion and to curb environmental regulations that critics say contributed to huge flowering breeds make him unsuitable for the Senate.

"Systemically, in his eight years as governor, he systematically dismantled the environmental services of that state," Nelson said in the same debate

Since both Nelson and Scott are known to most middle-class state voters, it is difficult to see how these attacks affect any large scale, Schale said.

"You have two people who are well defined, have fairly stable bases of their own and there is not much new information." he said.

Powered by the Hurricanes hurricanes

Three major storms in the last 14 months have caused their impact on the Senate race in different ways.

Hurricanes Irma and Maria (2017) and Michael (last month) gave Scott the opportunity to bend his executive skills leading the state through crises. Before and after Irma and Michael hit Florida, Scott was a constant presence on television that warned people to evacuate and assure them that the recovery would be strong when it was over.

Polls indicate that he has earned high marks for his performance.

Maria struck Puerto Rico, but Scott's frequent visits to the battered island, his interest in the families who decided to settle in Florida and his visible sympathy for the victims – struck a striking contrast with Tromba – won him among those of the Spanish community.

But hurricanes could also hurt Scott, analysts say.

Maria has brought the prospect of more moderate and liberal Puerto Ricans to state voters who, despite their general approval by the governor, may not want to help Trump helping the Senate seat become a Republican.

And Michael struck eight counties in Reliable Red North Florida (about 1.9 per cent of registered state voters, according to Schale), interrupting not only lives but also the willingness and ability of citizens to vote.

Analysts say he could deny Scott at least several thousand votes, not an insignificant amount in a contest that is expected to be decided with a minimum margin.

"They are trying to bring back their lives, let alone who will vote or not vote," said Pierce, the Republican counselor. "If you are in elections to be reduced to a few thousand votes, any small thing could affect the outcome."

A push at the finish line

Following the gambling plan that pushed him twice into the governor's mansion, Scott kicks off a latest state-of-the-art television debate as he makes the closure argument.

Nelson and his allies are committed to buying $ 2.3 million in the last days of the campaign, according to data gathered exclusively for the US TODAY network by the Kantar Media media campaign group.

MacManus, the retired US professor, said the ads will not decide the winner. Which side can best be related to a changing electoral state which, at least for the 2018 elections, is younger, more racially different and includes more women.

"The electorate of 2018 is not like 2014 [one]," he said.

Eventually, it will collapse on how Florida voters see the president, said Schale, the Democratic strategist.

"What he twice voted for was the poll that he established as Obama's rivals in 2010 and 2014," he said referring to the years that Scott won the dominant race. "If the late decision-makers decide to vote against Trump, then Nelson will probably win."

Contributing to: John McCarthy, Florida Today

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