- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 30, 2014

Democrat Charlie Crist has a 3-point lead over GOP Gov. Rick Scott in Florida just days out from Election Day, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll showing a jump in support among independent voters for Mr. Crist.

Mr. Crist leads Mr. Scott, 43 percent to 40 percent, with Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie taking 8 percent of the vote.

Mr. Crist, a former governor and Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat, takes 47 percent of independents to Mr. Scott’s 29 percent, with 16 percent opting for Mr. Wyllie. In a Quinnipiac poll from last week, Mr. Crist had 41 percent of independent voters to Mr. Scott’s 38 percent.

“Independent voters are often the difference in swing states like Florida, but the size of former Gov. Charlie Crist’s lead among them is truly remarkable,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. “Crist, who always has sought to portray himself as a pragmatist rather than an ideologue, seems to have sold that message to independents who historically have favored problem-solvers who are less political.”

Mr. Scott leads Mr. Crist by 10 points among men, 47 percent to 37 percent, with 9 percent going for Mr. Wyllie, while Mr. Crist leads Mr. Scott by 14 points among women, 49 percent to 35 percent, with 6 percent going for Mr. Wyllie.

With Mr. Wyllie out of the race, Mr. Crist still holds a 3-point lead over Mr. Scott, 45 percent to 42 percent. Mr. Crist has a 1.7-point lead over Mr. Scott in RealClearPolitics’ latest average of public polling on the race.

The Quinnipiac survey of 817 likely voters was taken from Oct. 22-27 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

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