To: Friends of the Campaign, Members of the Press, My Mother Judi Taylor who Favorites all my Memos on Facebook, People searching "Fred Taylor Hall of Fame" on the 'Internets', my friends Mac and Travis, and Greg Blair
From: Steve Schale
Re: Sleep is for the Weak - 6 days to go
Tuesday's early voting continues the trend we have seen since Day 1 of early voting, the gap between Republicans and Democrats continues to drop, now standing at 6.4%. This gap compares to 16.6% on this day of the election in 2010.
The GOP advantage stands at 140K, which is 100K votes lower than the margin that the GOP held at this point in the election in 2010.
Another way of looking at it, after yesterday, roughly 2.2 million have voted. The 2010 election reached this level on day 3 of the election, on which day the GOP held a 12.6% advantage. In real votes, the GOP held a 275K vote advantage, compared to 140K today.
To put both of these in perspective, Rick Scott won the election in 2010 by just over 1 percent, or 61,500 votes.
Looking at a Vote Model
To dig a little deeper into the vote margins, I continue to believe that we are tracking towards an election where Republicans will have a 1.5 to 2 point advantage among registered voters after everything is counted -- compared to 5% in 2010. As Marc Caputo reported a few days ago, this would be an election where neither party would have a real advantage.
Even if the two parties essentially tie in all remaining votes, the final vote tally would be just under +2.5% Republican in terms of the people who vote.
So how does Crist win in this scenario? Its pretty simple: If Crist receives roughly 2% more of the Democratic vote than Scott wins of the GOP vote, and wins the NPA by a few points, Crist would win a narrow election. And again, it is important to keep in mind that at this point, +2.5% GOP appears to be a worst case scenario at this point.
Not all of the data reports timely, but it appears that Democrats won vote the day yesterday, driven by more Dems voting by mail than GOP.
The top five counties where Democrats have improved the vote margin over the Republicans are all places where Democrats win, showing that our base turnout effort is very strong. These include: Osceola (+16.4), Dade (+15.3), Palm (+14.5), Broward (+14.1) and St. Lucie (+13.7).
For example, in Dade County, Dems are up from 52,000 in 2010 to nearly 87,000 today and Broward from 47,000 to 88,500.
The gains are not limited to just Democratic counties. Traditionally Republican counties in the Tampa media market also show real gains for the Democrats, like Sarasota, where Democrats have cut the gap by nearly 13%, Hernando by nearly 13% and Pasco by 12%.
One county worth mentioning is Manatee, where a small but spirited local Democratic operation there has turned out 111% more Democratic voters than voted at this point in 2010, closing the gap by 11%. These changes matter, as they go right to the core of those counties where Republicans need big margins to win statewide. We are expanding our support in base counties, and cutting into their support in counties they win.
Responding to a Question from Scott Campaign. Answer: 600,000
Finally, I wanted to take a moment to answer a question posed to me via a blind copy email to members of the Florida Press Corps, by Greg Blair, the Communications Director for Governor Rick Scott. Asked Greg to me: "Would you say that having to tell your donors that it’s okay you’re losing every single day has had a negative impact on your fundraising late in the campaign? And as your fundraising lags, how much money are you able to put behind that Clinton ad you’re touting so much?
Since October 4th, the Crist for Governor Campaign has out-raised the Scott for Governor campaign by $600,000. This is largely due to a growing optimism among Crist supporters that the combination of good public polling and early voting numbers provides Governor Crist with an excellent chance to win. Now in fairness, our candidate can't stroke him a $TBA million check to run 10,000 negative ads this week, but nonetheless, we are doing well.
I hope by answering this question that Greg and his friends in the press corps can help me get a very simple answer out of my memo writer partner in crime Tim, will he join me in endorsing in a bipartisan manner Fred Taylor's bid for the Hall of Fame? It may be a silly question, but no more silly than the GOP's constant suggestion that this race is just like 2012.
A quick thanks
My ability to crank out these daily missives is made possible primarily due to the help of one person, Ben King. Ben is one of the smartest data guys that you have never heard of. Every morning and evening, I pepper Ben with questions and instead of writing back "Old Man -- Go Home," he replies back with spreadsheet after spreadsheet of data. I owe him more bourbon than even my Republican operative buddies Kirk Pepper and Kevin Sweeny could consume in a lifetime for his hours of work. So Ben, thank you for your help and more importantly your friendship.
I will admit these memos are silly. But we write them because if we don't, the media will say we are hiding and not responding. So I will be billing the Florida press for my future carpal tunnel surgery.
But it boils down to this: all that matters are the votes. This race is nothing but close. I do believe Crist is ahead -- as I am sure anyone who saw the Rick Scott campaign Giuliani ad would agree -- or their increased TV buy from yesterday, and I am confident that we will win.
But Democrats need to go vote, like right now.
We vote, we win. It is that simple. I for one, will be canvassing this weekend.
Until tomorrow's memo volley.