Rep. Charlie Crist is shown to have a large — and growing — lead in the polling for the Democratic primary for the upcoming gubernatorial race, leading the closest candidate, Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried, by over 30 points.
Crist’s lead marks his largest to date. In prior polling, Crist held a lead over Fried in the range of 7 to 12 points, depending on the pollster, metrics used, and sample size. Today’s findings, released by St. Pete Polls, show the Representative leading the field in every meaningful demographic, including men, women, Latino voters, and black voters.
Crist additionally leads in every age demographic. His lowest numbers came from the 18-to-29 range, where 46.1 percent of voters stated they would vote for the former governor while his highest came from the 70-and-up crowd, receiving 55.2 percent of the response.
Crist crossed the $1 million threshold for funds collected in March, becoming the first Democrat gubernatorial candidate to do so in a single month. Now seen as a clear favorite to close out the primary race, Crist’s earnings amount to $8.2 million overall.
“Thank you to all our donors for helping Team Crist go above and beyond in March: over $1 million raised!” Crist posted to Twitter. “We’re humbled by this outpouring of support our campaign is receiving as we build a grassroots movement to bring compassion and commonsense leadership back to Tallahassee.”
Crist received a long list of endorsements in his bid to re-capture the top position in the state, including Rep. Al Lawson, Rep. Kathy Castor, and St. Petersburg Beach Mayor Alan Johnson.
Despite gaining traction in the Primary, Crist still falters against Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is seen as the runaway favorite and expected to win a second term in Tallahassee.
Recent polling conducted by the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab suggests that 55 percent of Floridians would vote to reelect DeSantis, while just 34 percent would swing for Crist.
DeSantis is unmatched, not just within Florida, but nationwide in his fundraising totals. The governor’s fundraising wealth puts him as the number one fundraiser in state politics in the 2022 election cycle so far.
Amassing an incredible $110 million in 2021 alone, DeSantis’ top donors include the Republican Governors Association ($6,600,000), CEO of Citadel LLC. Kenneth C. Griffin ($5,000,000), and WeatherTech founder David F. MacNeil ($800,000). DeSantis also received $500,000 from the Republican Party of Florida.
DeSantis’ $110 million is such an astounding total that the next highest fundraising governor up for reelection in 2022, Texas’ Greg Abbott, who reported collecting $44,778,653, less than half of that of DeSantis.