A new poll obtained by The Capitolist shows Republican Ritch Workman in a better position than his primary opponent, Debbie Mayfield, which runs counter to what her own recent polling suggests. The two are locked in a virtual civil war for the Republican nomination in Florida Senate District 17.
This latest in a flurry of recent polls shows Workman with a six-point advantage over Mayfield, 32%-26%, with 37% still undecided. About six percent of voters opted for a third candidate, Michael Thomas. Conducted between July 11th-13th by Tel Opinion Research, the survey asked 300 likely voters which candidate they would vote for if the election were held today. The poll has a margin of error of 5%. The cross tabs were not provided to The Capitolist.
Asked about Workman’s internal poll findings, Mayfield’s campaign declined to respond on the record, however a spokeswoman for a third-party group supporting Mayfield rejected the findings.
“This poll has about as much credibility as Workman at this point,” said Erin Isaac, communications director for Stop Career Politicians. “It’s a sloppy attempt at a poll leak and a ham handed move by Workman to revive a campaign that’s been bleeding out for weeks.”
But a Republican strategist advising Workman’s campaign fired back at polling touted by Mayfield, the most recent of which showed her up by 47%-20% in a survey conducted by ViewPoint Florida.
“Look at their polling. They are using robocalls that are historically inaccurate compared to live calling,” said the strategist, who declined to be identified. “Workman’s survey was done by an independent polling company. Mayfield is relying on polling from a firm co-owned by one of her paid political consultants.”
Yesterday, David Bishop, spokesman for Workman’s campaign, told FloridaPolitics.com that the ViewPoint Florida poll didn’t match information available to his campaign:
“While it’s tight, we don’t put a lot of validity in those two polls by the opposition. They don’t match polls that we’ve done, that we’ve seen, or the general feel,” said Bishop. “Ritch has a good feel for the district and for the race as it stands right now.”
Regardless of which poll one chooses to believe, the battle between Workman and Mayfield is almost certainly tight, and will likely only get uglier in the final weeks. The primary is August 30th.