Florida Gubernatorial and Lieutenant Gubernatorial election, 2014

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Florida Gubernatorial and Lieutenant Gubernatorial Election

Primary Date
August 26, 2014

General Election Date:
November 4, 2014

Incumbents prior to election:
Rick Scott Republican Party
Carlos Lopez-Cantera Republican Party
Gov. Rick Scott
Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera
Florida State Executive Elections
Top Ballot
Governor/Lt. GovernorAttorney General
Down Ballot
Treasurer, Agriculture Commissioner

Current trifecta for Republicans
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State executive offices in Florida
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The Florida Gubernatorial and Lieutenant Gubernatorial election will be held on November 4, 2014, following a primary on August 26. The winners will serve 4-year terms in office.

Incumbent Governor Rick Scott (R) is running for re-election.[1] His running mate is current Florida Lieutenant Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera, whom Scott appointed in January 2014 to fill the vacancy left by ex-Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll's resignation the previous March. Lopez-Cantera was sworn into office on February 3, 2014.[2] He is the first Hispanic lieutenant governor in Florida history.[3]

The race has been rated a "Toss-up" by The Cook Political Report and Governing, among numerous other political analysts and publications, current as of September 2014.[4] [5]

The competitive gubernatorial contest is the only race on the November ballot that threatens to shift the partisan balance of power in Florida. Both chambers of the Florida State Legislature and the governor's office are currently held by the Republican Party, making Florida a state government trifecta. The Florida House of Representatives and Florida State Senate are considered safe-Republican heading into the 2014 elections. With the governorship facing a potential partisan switch, Florida could lose its trifecta status. (Learn more about the state's most competitive legislative races on the battleground chambers page.)

Florida is one of 12 states to use a strictly closed primary process, in which the selection of a party's candidates in an election is limited to registered party members.[6][7][8]

Candidates

Under Article IV of the Florida Constitution, gubernatorial nominees are required to select running mates for the general election. Running mates are listed in order of "Governor/Lieutenant Governor."[9]

General election

Lost in the Democratic primary

Lost in the Republican primary


Results

Primary election

Republican primary

Governor of Florida, Republican Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngRick Scott Incumbent 87.6% 835,084
Elizabeth Cuevas-Neunder 10.6% 100,803
Yinka Adeshina 1.8% 16,912
Total Votes 952,799
Election Results Via:My Florida - Election Watch.

Democratic primary

Governor of Florida, Democratic Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngCharlie Crist 74.4% 623,831
Nan Rich 25.6% 214,993
Total Votes 838,824
Election Results Via:My Florida - Election Watch.


Race background

Policypedia
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Policy and Elections
Education policy is a major issue in Florida. Find out more about Florida Education policy.

Republican incumbent Rick Scott is seeking a second term as governor in 2014.

Sources such as Governing, Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball, The Cook Political Report, The Washington Post and Daily Kos have rated Scott among the most vulnerable governors facing re-election in 2014.[16][17][18][19][20]

In June 2013, ex-Florida Sen. Nan Rich became the first Democratic candidate in the race. She was later joined by former Florida Gov. and newly minted Democrat Charlie Crist. Crist's candidacy looms heavy over Scott's re-election campaign, according to match-up and approval polls dating back as far as May 2012.[21][22][23]

Long affiliated with the Republican Party, Crist's first party switch occurred in 2010, when, after losing the Republican primary for U.S. Senate to Marco Rubio, he changed his registration to Independent as an alternative route to reaching the general election ballot. In the fall of 2013, Crist became a Democrat; This latest party makeover was widely interpreted as a strategic maneuver to help him unseat Scott in the 2014 governor's race.[24]

As the Crist story unfolded and media coverage about Scott's struggles increased, a slew of other lesser-known hopefuls began filing for the office, mainly as write-ins or with no party affiliation. By October 2013, there were over twenty potentials actively petitioning for a place on the primary and general election ballots.[25] When the filing window finally closed on June 20, 2014, the number had dropped to—a still crowded—eighteen qualified gubernatorial candidates. The Republican field settled to three, including Scott, while the Democratic field remained a head-to-head battle between Crist and Rich. Unopposed Libertarian nominee Adrian Wyllie earned a direct pass to the general election, along with nine write-ins and three candidates with no stated party preference.[26]

Under Article IV of the Florida Constitution, gubernatorial nominees are required to select running mates after the primary, though they are permitted to do so in advanced. Customs for selecting running mates vary across Florida's main political parties. For example, Crist was chided for breaking with party tradition when he announced Annette Taddeo-Goldstein as his lieutenant governor pick prior to the primary. "Because he’s been a life-long Republican, Charlie Crist might be excused for not knowing that Democrats typically don’t choose a running mate until they win the nomination," jabbed Nan Rich, his Democratic primary challenger, in a July campaign press release.[27]

In January, Scott appointed Carlos Lopez-Cantera as Florida's new lieutenant governor, ending an extended vacancy in the office that began with former-Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll's March 2013 resignation amid a public relations scandal. Since Lopez-Cantera's appointment occurred during a gubernatorial election year, his qualifications as a campaigner factored significantly into his selection. Scott and Carroll shared the ticket in 2010, so the governor was left with the responsibility of picking not only a new lieutenant governor to serve out Carroll's term, but also a new running mate for the 2014 election.

Scott and Crist handily secured their respective parties' nominations in the August 26 primary election.[28]

The governor and lieutenant governor will be elected on a joint ticket in the general election on November 4, 2014.

Ad spending, influence

The Scott versus Crist election battle has so far played out substantially through television ads. Whether sponsored internally or produced and aired under the auspices of independent expenditures, the commercials have been predominantly negative, with each candidate and his outside backers barring no holds to disgrace the other before Florida's electorate of active television viewers.

In late September, Scott raised upped the ante on media spending for the upcoming fight against Crist by sinking an additional $8 million on television commercials, next to Crist's roughly $5.5 ad-buy increase on current and future spots. Already a wallet-shattering sum, these latest ad-buys put the total amount spent on behalf of the two frontrunners' marketing campaigns past the $50 million mark. Scott is responsible for 71 percent, or over $35 million, of this pot, far eclipsing contributions from Crist and his supporters. The incumbent's standing in the race nonetheless remains precarious; with less than two months before the general election, polls conducted amid the marketing blitz indicate a slight improvement for Scott, inviting comparisons to his road from virtual no-name to victory back in 2010, which was attributed in large part to a massive emphasis on TV commercials.[29]

A September 23 article in The Miami Herald pointed out that a candidate's on-air presence does not guarantee success in an election, although Florida's media-marketing landscape is such that a candidate who neglects television altogether is almost guaranteed to fail. "If TV ads decided the governor’s race, Scott would win in a landslide," the article stated.[29]


Polls

General election
Cirst vs. Scott vs. Wyllie

Florida Governor three-way matchup
Poll Charlie Crist (D) Rick Scott* (R)Adrian Wyllie (L)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Quinnipiac University
July 17-21, 2014
39%37%9%12%+/-2.81,251
Cherry (R-Florida Chamber of Commerce)
August 10-13, 2014
35%41%4%11%+/-4.0627
Tampa Bay Times/Bay News 9/UF Bob Graham Center
August 27-31, 2014
31%41%6%9%+/-3.4814
Public Policy Polling
September 4-7, 2014
42%39%8%11%+/-3.4818
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
September 23-15, 2014
39%44%7%9%+/-4.2571
Quinnipiac University
September 17-22, 2014
42%44%8%5%+/-3.1991
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
September 19-22, 2014
42%43%4%11%+/-4.1588
AVERAGES 38.57% 41.29% 6.57% 9.71% +/-3.57 808.57
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

**Incumbency is denoted by asterisk (*)
Major party candidates

Crist vs. Scott (June 2014 - present)
Poll Charlie Crist (D) Rick Scott* (R)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Cherry (R-Florida Chamber of Commerce)
June 11, 2014
38%41%21%+/-3.5806
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
June 20-23, 2014
41%42%8%+/-3.5541
Gravis Marketing
June 20-23, 2014
39%41%15%+/-3.01,232
Survey USA/WFLA-TV
June 30-7/2
43%45%5%+/-3.4558
Survey USA/WFLA-TV
July 17-21, 2014
46%40%6%+/-3.5564
Quinnipiac University
July 17-21, 2014
45%40%9%+/-2.81,251
Rasmussen Reports Poll
July 29-30
41%42%9%+/-3.0900
SurveyUSA/WFLA TV
July 31-August 4, 2014
43%45%4%+/-3.4859
Rasmussen Reports Poll
September 8-10, 2014
42%40%9%+/-3.01,000
AVERAGES 42% 41.78% 9.56% +/-3.23 856.78
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

**Incumbency is denoted by asterisk (*)
Hypothetical general election match-ups (May 2012 - June 2014)
Crist vs. Scott

Crist vs. Scott (January 2014 - June 2014)
Poll Charlie Crist (D) Rick Scott* (R)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
University of Florida Poll
January 27-February 1, 2014
47%40%13%+/-31,006
University of North Florida
March 6-16, 2014
34%33%17%+/-4.35507
Sunshine State News/VSS
March 31-April 3, 2014
44%45%10%+/-3.46800
SurveyUSA Poll
April 10-24, 2014
46%41%6%+/-4.5502
Mason Dixon Poll
April 15-22, 2014
42%42%12%+/-3.8700
Rasmussen Reports Poll
April 21-22, 2014
45%39%10%+/-4750
Quinnipiac University
April 23-28, 2014
48%38%12%+/-2.61,413
News Channel 8/Survey USA Poll
April 30, 2014
44%41%8%+/-4.3-
Gravis Marketing
April 23-25, 2014
43%44%9%+/-3.0907
McLaughlin (R-American Future Fund)
May 4-6, 2014
38%42%20%+/-3.4800
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
May 9-12, 2014
44%41%8%+/-4.2554
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
May 20-22, 2014
40%42%8%+/-4.3531
Saint Leo University
May 28-June 4, 2014
41%43%16%+/-3.5420
Public Policy Poll
June 4-9, 2014
42%42%16%+/-3.3672
SurveyUSA/WFLA-TV
June 5-10, 2014
44%40%8%+/-3.4556
AVERAGES 42.8% 40.87% 11.53% +/-3.67 553.6
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

**Incumbency is denoted by asterisk (*)

Crist vs. Scott (May 2012 - January 2014)
Poll Charlie Crist (D) Rick Scott* (R)Don't Know/RefusedOtherMargin of ErrorSample Size
Florida Opinion Research
May 23–25, 2012
48.1%34.1%12.8%5.0%+/-3.46802
Quinnipiac University Poll
June 11-16, 2013
47%37%12%4%+/-2.91,176
Public Policy Poll
September 27-29, 2013
50%38%12%0%+/-4.1579
University of Florida Poll
September 30-October 8, 2013
44%40%14%2%+/-4.27526
Cherry Communication/Florida Chamber of Commerce Poll
October 4-8, 2013
46%41%13%0%+/-4.0618
Quinnipiac University Poll
November 12-17, 2013
47%40%14%8%+/-2.41,464
Saint Leo Polling Institute Poll of Likely voters
December 1-8, 2013
46%34%20%0%+/-5.0318
Fabrizio McLaughlin & Associates Poll (Internal, leaked)
November 24-26, 2013
49%45%6%0%+/-3.11,000
Public Policy Poll
January 16-21, 2014
43%41%15%0%+/-6.3591
Quinnipiac University Poll
January 22-27, 2014
50%34%12%4%+/-2.51,565
AVERAGES 47.01% 38.41% 13.08% 2.3% +/-3.8 863.9
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

**Incumbency is denoted by asterisk (*)
Hypothetical general election match-ups (June 2013 - April 2014)
Rich vs. Scott

Governor of Florida Hypothetical Match-Up Poll
Poll Nan Rich (D) Rick Scott* (R)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Quinnipiac University Poll
(June 11-16, 2013)
36%42%18%+/-2.91,176
Public Policy Poll
(September 27-29, 2013)
36%37%27%+/-4.1579
University of Florida Poll
(September 30-October 8, 2013)
28%43%27%+/-4.27526
Cherry Communication/Florida Chamber of Commerce Poll
(October 4-8, 2013)
29%40%31%+/-4.0618
Quinnipiac University Poll
(November 12-17, 2013)
35%43%14%+/-2.41,646
Public Policy Poll
(January 16-21, 2014)
34%40%25%+/-6.3591
Quinnipiac University
(January 22-27, 2014)
37%41%19%+/-2.51,565
University of Florida
(January 27-February 1, 2014)
36%41%0%+/-3.01,006
Saint Leo University
(March 16-19, 2014)
32%40%28%+/-3.5401
Quinnipiac University
(April 23-28, 2014)
36%42%15%+/-2.61,413
AVERAGES 33.9% 40.9% 20.4% +/-3.56 952.1
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

**Incumbency is denoted by asterisk (*)


Campaign media

Rick Scott

English-language campaign ads


Navy - Posted to YouTube 4/16/14

Ran Away - Posted to YouTube 4/24/14

Grandpa - Posted to YouTube 5/16/14

Spanish-language campaign ads


Oportunidad, Scott's 1st Spanish-language campaign ad - Posted to YouTube 4/21/14

Nos Abandonó, Spanish-language version of Ran Away- Posted to YouTube 5/6/14

Charlie Crist


Sunshine, Crist's first 1st TV ad-spot of campaign - Posted to YouTube 7/6/14

In Failed, Crist accuses Scott of cutting education funds to cover tax breaks for the wealthy - Posted to YouTube 8/22/14

Outside groups

Florida Democratic Party


Answers - Ad reprising 2010 campaign attacks against Rick Scott over his alleged Medicaid fraud - Posted to YouTube 6/18/14

Recortes - Spanish language ad about education - Posted to YouTube 7/10/14

Florida Republican Party


The Better Governor - Republican Party juxtaposes Gov. Scott's record against that of ex-Gov. Crist, gives Scott edge - Posted to YouTube 7/11/14

NextGen Climate


Hiding discusses Scott's association with dubious energy interests such as Duke Energy - Posted 8/25/14

Key deadlines

Deadline Event
June 20 Filing deadline
August 26 Primary election
November 4 General election
November 18 State Election Canvassing Commission meets to certify official results
January 6, 2015 Inauguration day for state executive officials in general election

Recent news

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Florida Gubernatorial and Lieutenant Gubernatorial election, 2014 News Feed

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See also

External links

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References

  1. News-Press.com, "Florida parties already prepping for 2014 gubernatorial race," May 20, 2012
  2. Bradenton Herald, "Gov. Rick Scott announces Carlos Lopez-Cantera as new lieutenant governor," January 14, 2014
  3. The Miami Herald, "New Florida lieutenant governor to be sworn in Monday," February 2, 2014
  4. The Cook Political Report, "Governors Race Ratings 2014," September 15, 2014
  5. Governing, "2014 Governors Races," September 10, 2014
  6. National Conference of State Legislatures Website, "State Primary Election Types," accessed January 6, 2014
  7. Fair Vote, "Congressional and Presidential Primaries: Open, Closed, Semi-Closed, and 'Top Two,'" accessed January 6, 2014
  8. Ballotpedia research conducted December 26, 2013 through January 3, 2014 researching and analyzing various state websites and codes.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Florida Division of Elections, "Candidate Listing for 2014 General Election," September 12, 2014
  10. Bay News, "A year away, Gov. Scott, Dems prep for next governor's race," July 16, 2012
  11. Independent Political Report, "Adrian Wyllie Announces Run for Florida Governor as LP candidate: One of the First to Do So," February 7, 2013, accessed June 26, 2013
  12. Adrian Wyllie for Governor 2014 Official campaign website, "Meet Greg Roe," accessed August 18, 2014
  13. Farid Khavari for Governor 2014 Official campaign website, "Homepage," accessed November 4, 2013
  14. Miami Herald, "State Sen. Nan Rich will run for governor in 2014," April 16, 2012
  15. Elizabeth Cuevas-Neunder on Facebook, "Timeline," accessed October 2, 2013
  16. University of Virginia Center for Politics: Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2013-2014 Gubernatorial Races," April 29, 2013
  17. The Washington Post, "The Fix's top gubernatorial races," September 27, 2013
  18. Daily Kos, "Daily Kos Elections gubernatorial race ratings: Initial ratings for 2013-14," October 6, 2013
  19. Governing, "2014 Governors Races," September 10, 2014
  20. The Cook Political Report, "Governors Race Ratings 2014," September 15, 2014
  21. The Sun Sentinel, "Charlie Christ Announces Candidacy For Florida's Governor, As A Democrat," November 4, 2013
  22. Politico, "Ex-GOP Fla. Gov. Charlie Crist to run for job as Democrat," November 1, 2013
  23. The Daily Caller, "Charlie Crist briefly visits with Democratic Governors Association," January 9, 2013
  24. The Hill, "Charlie Crist joins Democratic party ahead of gubernatorial election," December 8, 2012
  25. Florida Division of Elections, "Candidate Listing for 2014 General Election - Governor," accessed October 7, 2013
  26. Florida Division of Elections, "Candidate Listing for 2014 General Election - Governor," accessed July 22, 2014
  27. Nan Rich for Governor 2014 Official campaign website, "Press release: Statement from Senator Nan Rich regarding Charlie Crist’s selection of a potential running mate," July 17, 2014
  28. My Florida - Election Watch, "2014 Primary, Unofficial Election Night Results," accessed August 26, 2014
  29. 29.0 29.1 The Miami Herald, "Marc Caputo: With $50 million in TV ad spending, Rick Scott-Charlie Crist race is one big marketing campaign," September 23, 2014