JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A poll of likely Democratic voters in the race for Florida's Congressional District 5 gives incumbent Al Lawson a significant advantage over his opponent Alvin Brown.
According to the University of North Florida poll, Lawson would receive 48 percent of the votes from Democrats while Brown, the former Jacksonville mayor, would receive only 29 percent. 22 percent were undecided.
"Early voting is well underway, Election Day is just a few days away and Lawson has a commanding 19-percentage point lead (in the poll)," said Dr. Michael Binder, associate professor of political science and director of the UNF Public Opinion Research Lab. "Brown supporters might point to the large number of undecided voters as potential supporters, but late deciders never swing entirely for one candidate."
Brown hosted a rally Thursday at his campaign office on Dunn Avenue. His message remained consistent: Voters have to vote, and if they do, Brown believes he can win.
"I think we have a great opportunity to close and win this race," Brown said. "The bottom line is going to be turn out. I think we're right on the issues. It's the matter of really getting people to get out and vote."
The poll also revealed Democratic voters across Congressional District 5 have similar beliefs about the most important issues in the United States. Results show 31 percent of participants said political leadership was most important, followed by 19 percent who picked crime and 13 percent who picked health care.
In the Florida governor's race, the UNF poll found that 31 percent of District 5 Democrats would vote for Andrew Gillum, the Tallahassee mayor, in the primary election. Philip Levine was in second place with 18 percent. Gwen Graham followed with 16 percent, then Jeff Greene with 10 percent. But 21 percent of likely voters in the district said they were still undecided in the governor's race.