Florida Chamber poll has Bill Nelson edging Rick Scott
Bill Nelson, Rick Scott: one of the more interesting races in 2018.

scott nelson

Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson has a two-point lead over Republican Gov. Rick Scott in Florida’s U.S. Senate race, according to a new poll released Friday by the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

The chamber’s poll, conducted Sept. 19 through Monday and released at the chamber’s 2018 Future of Florida Forum meeting in Orlando Friday, gives Nelson 48 percent and Scott 46 percent, which falls within the 4.4 percent margin of error the chamber cited.

That makes it the third poll released this week that has Nelson ahead, though by a much narrower margin than the Quinnipiac University Poll released Tuesday and also tighter than the Marist/NBC News poll, also released Tuesday.

The Chamber’s poll was of 622 Florida voters.

The poll also found modestly positive voter approval for both candidates’ job performances: 50 percent said they approved of Scott’s job performance, while 46 percent said they disapproved, giving the second term Governor a plus-4 favorability rating; 46 percent said they approved of Nelson’s performance, while 41 percent disapproved, giving him a plus-5. About one in seven respondents were unsure about Nelson, however, while only 4 percent were indecisive about Scott.

Also of note: The poll put the job performance of President Donald Trump underwater by a 51-46 percent margin. Trump has been vocal in his support of Scott during his Senate campaign, going so far as to stump for him and  Ron DeSantis, the Republican vying to succeed Scott in the Governor’s mansion, during a late-July rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa.

The Nelson vs. Scott election is one of the most-watched races in the fall, as national Democrats look to defend 10 sitting Democratic Senators in states carried by Trump two years ago.

According to a recent analysis by Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight, Nelson is the “most vulnerable” of the two dozen Dems seeking another term in November.

“It might seem surprising that the fundamentals calculation regards Florida’s Bill Nelson as the most vulnerable Democratic incumbent since Florida is quite purple and there are Democrats up for re-election in some genuinely red states” … “Nelson has a very good challenger in Florida Gov. Rick Scott; one way our model accounts for candidate quality is by looking at the highest elected office the opponent has held, with races against current or former governors or senators falling into the top category.”

Still, that analysis pegged Nelson as leading Scott by a tenth of a percentage point.

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected]


  • Rick N Mosley

    September 28, 2018 at 7:30 pm

    Rick I am a Republican always will be. But I can not vote for Rick Scott .He has broke most of what he said he was going to do on his second term.,He has stood so much money from the the people in Florida and help all his friends get more richer. We can’t let him stay in office. HE is for him self and all his friends. I don’t like Bill Nelson but at least he trying to help the people in Florida. And he has not stood millions from the the people in Florida like Rick Scott.

    • GBrown

      September 28, 2018 at 10:31 pm

      Sure your a Republican.

      • Nordonia Nate

        September 29, 2018 at 9:40 am

        They aren’t. They aren’t even creative with their attempt..

    • Donna Gutman

      October 2, 2018 at 1:40 pm

      Thank you for this

  • Na De Moe Yan

    September 29, 2018 at 7:41 am

    The Voters,
    The Florida State,
    The United States Of America.

    Dear Sirs and Madams,

    We support Mr.Rick Scott for Senate and we request that the Voters of the Florida State,the Independent Voters,the Voters of the Republican Party,and the Voters of the Democratic Party, vote for Mr.Rick Scott in the United States Senate Election in Florida on 6 November 2018.


    Mr.Khin Win,
    Ms.Khin Than Myint,
    Mr.Win Myint Oo,
    Ms.Khin Thu Zar Phyo,
    Mr.Khant Ko Ko,
    Mr.Win Myint Oo Jr,
    Mr.Zaw Win Myint,
    Ms.Kyawk Kyawk Htway,
    Mr.Myo Kyaw,
    Ms.Htway Htway Mar,
    Mr.Yan Aung Kyaw,
    Ms.A Thari Aung Thin,
    Mr.Soe Tun,
    Ms.Cho Cho Mar,
    Mr.Ye Thura Tun,
    Ms.Wai Wai Thannar Tun,
    Ms.Hnin Thi Tar,
    Mr.Soe Pyae Wa,
    Ms.Poe Ei Phyu,
    Dr.Shine Pyae Naung,
    Ms.Myint Myint Khin,
    Mr.Nyein Chan,
    Mr.Aye Chan,
    Mr.Win Thu Tun,
    Ms.May Myo,
    Mr.Myo Min Toe,
    Ms.Chan Mya Aye,
    Mr.Phone Pyae Zone,
    Ms.Phoo Thakhin,
    Ms.Thin Thin Aye,
    Ms.Thet Thet Htway,
    Mr.San Myint,
    Ms.Myat Myat Htway,
    Ms.Eaint Eaint Thu,
    Mr.Thu Rane Zaw,
    Ms.Na De Moe Yan.

  • Ron wilb

    September 29, 2018 at 9:52 am

    Rick Scott sucks ass. He is a liar, a thief and a prejudice asshole.

    VOTE NELSON for Florida.

  • Sharon Winterod

    September 29, 2018 at 11:06 am

    Nelson has got to go. The Dems has insured that I will vote straight Republican this time. I may never vote for another one of the democrats. They are there for money and power. They don’t care about the American people or the truth.

  • The I-4 Corridor

    September 29, 2018 at 10:29 pm

    It’s not about the titles of Republican, Democrat anymore. It’s about the person, who knows and lives the difference between right and wrong, patriot and doj criminal, and upholds the USA constitution and the unalienable rights and laws it contains for freedom, liberty, and democracy. The lost, radical, and evil are on a mission to destroy thru lies, deceit, smear campaigns, and greed for power for a new world order to be centralized circumventing this sovereign nation. On the local level it is choosing between the lesser of 2 evils with Scott and Nelson, and that is Scott. Nelson’s voting record and care for the Demo club in Washington is more important than the people’s will and voting majority. Deal in facts, not subjective emotional rhetoric, and always check the source of info, because now some people on the Left dont know the definition of credible. Statements without legal evidence are not truths.
    Join the forces working to unseat pseudo representatives on both partisan groups that defy the peoples will. Vote for DeSantis, and unfortunately Scott.

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Renzo Downey, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Kelly Hayes, Joe Henderson, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Scott Powers, Gray Rohrer, Aimee Sachs, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Andrew Wilson, Wes Wolfe, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn