Besides being Republicans, what else do Mitt Romney, Connie Mack and Mike Weinstein have in common?
They are all winners of an unscientific straw poll held Thursday night at a pre-primary hob nob downtown.
Voters turned out for a meet and greet with candidates. It's the only time you'll get this large of a number of candidates in one room together and that's exactly why Blane Cologne came to Channel 4's news partner WOKV's political hobnob. He wanted answers.
"I am here fact finding right now," Cologne said. "I have not been doing my due diligence the way I typically do in the past 26, so I want to learn more about the candidates and what their platforms are. Learn their issues and get more educated."
"I'm worried about our community," Reverend Leonard Dansler said. "A lot of the community is lacking not only state support, but city support as well, in the African American communities."
Once voters' concerns were addressed and enough hands were shaken, folks cast their ballot in the straw poll.
It included local, state and federal races. It's not binding, but WOKV's news director Rich Jones, said it's still a big deal.
"I think it gives people the opportunity to say they won something before the vote," Jones said. "We won before the August primary. We won before November. We turned the people out."
Many wonder if the results of this straw poll are indicators of what's to come. No one knows. But the big winner here, Jones said, are the voters.
"You are inundated with the ads on television," Jones said. "You see the yard signs everywhere. "Here's your chance to talk to the candidates in a somewhat intimate setting and ask what they are going to do about this issue and that issue."
For a full list of the results from Thursday night's straw poll, visit WOKV's website at by clicking here.