Rubio With Slight Edge in Florida

This may go down to the wire:

Florida’s Senate race remains all about Republican-turned-independent Charlie Crist and likely GOP nominee Marco Rubio.

The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in Florida finds the two candidates neck-and-neck again this month, with Rubio earning 36% support and Crist, the state’s current Republican governor, capturing 34% of the vote. Prospective Democratic candidate Kendrick Meek remains a distant third, picking up 15%. Fourteen percent (14%) of the state’s voters remain undecided…

Absolutely this is anyone’s race – except Meek’s; he might as well write his concession speech early and start lobbying for an Administration job.

Crist’s eroding approval rating as Governor might eventually tell the tale for him here – he’s down 7 points since Rasmussen’s last survey, and that can probably be traced to the continuing bad economy in Florida coupled with the increasing disaster along Florida’s Gulf coast; that oil swings ’round to Miami, and that might be all she wrote for Crist.

Rubio’s problem is to get better with GOP voters – Democrats are splitting fairly evenly between Meeks and Crist and as election day nears, there is a chance that this Democrat support for Crist will both solidify and grow. Rasmussen has Rubio with 60% support among Republicans – it’ll probably take at least 70% of them to secure Rubio’s victory, unless Crist really melts down over the next couple months.

The key is to remind Florida Republicans and Republican-leaning Independents that a vote for Crist is a vote for Reid and Obama – Crist is certain to back the Democrats in organizational matters and will vote with them most of the time. If that can be driven home, then the overwhelming bulk of GOP voters will come home and what will then be a split Democrat vote will ensure GOP victory.