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It appears there's a new Democratic front-runner in Florida.

2020

New front-runner? Mike Bloomberg edges out Joe Biden in new Florida poll

Biden dropped 15% from the last poll.

A shocking St. Pete Polls survey late last month has Mike Bloomberg surging to second in the Florida presidential primary. The newest version from the same outfit, released Friday, shows Bloomberg is now slightly ahead among Florida Democrats, edging out former Vice President Joe Biden.

St. Pete Polls conducted the survey among likely Florida voters. More than 27% selected Bloomberg as their top choice. Biden secured just under 26% support in the survey.

That’s within the poll’s margin of error, which is 1.8 percentage points. But it marks a drastic shift from the previous snapshot of the race taken by St. Pete Polls, when Biden performed 15 points better.

That version showed Bloomberg in second place with 17% support. Biden, meanwhile, received 41% of the vote.

What changed? Well, for one, Iowa and New Hampshire voters have now had their say in the race. While the pair of states represent a tiny fraction of the Democratic electorate — and are far more white than the party’s base as a whole — Biden has nevertheless taken a hit among some voters because of his poor performances in those states. He placed fourth in Iowa and fifth in New Hampshire.

Biden has always been stronger among the minority community. But he’ll need a pair of strong showings in the next two states on the calendar — Nevada and South Carolina — both of which contain a much larger number of minority voters.

Meanwhile, the slow start has been enough to spook some Biden supporters in Florida. Sen. Jason Pizzo and former Rep. Robert Asencio — both previously Biden backers — have each swapped their endorsement to Bloomberg in recent weeks.

The former New York City Mayor has also courted endorsements from House Democratic Leader Kionne McGhee and Sen. Darryl Rouson as Bloomberg attempts to cut into Biden’s support among the black community.

Biden still leads among that demographic, even as his support dips overall. St. Pete Polls found 41.5% of black voters still favor Biden, with nearly 23% selecting Bloomberg.

And Bloomberg has his own hurdles to overcome, given recent revelations about his record.

A 2015 recording leaked this week revealed Bloomberg defended his stop-and-frisk policy during a speech by stating he needed to “put a lot of cops where the crime is, which means in minority neighborhoods.”

In the audio, Bloomberg can be heard saying the only way to keep guns out of the hands of minority youth is “to throw them up against the wall and frisk them.”

Elsewhere in the recording, Bloomberg said, “95% of your murders — murderers and murder victims — fit one M.O. You can just take the description, Xerox it, and pass it out to all the cops. They are male, minorities, 16 to 25. That’s true in New York, that’s true in virtually every city.”

In response to the backlash following the audio’s release, Bloomberg reiterated past statements that he was wrong about the policy at the time.

“By the time I left office, I cut it back by 95%, but I should’ve done it faster and sooner. I regret that, and I have apologized — and I have taken responsibility for taking too long to understand the impact it had on black and Latino communities,” he said.

And in 2008 remarks uncovered Thursday, Bloomberg seemed to partially blame the end of redlining for the economic collapse that year. Redlining was a discriminatory form of lending aimed to keep minorities in impoverished neighborhoods.

The poll also comes as Biden focuses heavily on Florida. He launched a new ad campaign in 26 states, including Florida, touting his work as New York City Mayor on lifting black-owned businesses.

According to a Florida Politics analysis, Bloomberg has already spent at least $11 million on television ads in Florida’s major media markets while his Democratic opponents have spent nothing.

Bloomberg has also opened several campaign offices in Florida as his opponents continue focusing their efforts on early primary states.

The St. Pete Polls survey was conducted from Feb. 12 to 13, just as these stories began gaining traction. It remains to be seen whether those statements — and further investigation into the record of the newest entrant into the race — will slow Bloomberg’s progress.

Both Bloomberg and Biden earned more than double support of the next-highest competitor. Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg was barely ahead of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the survey. Buttigieg earned 10.5% of the vote, while Sanders sat at 10.4%.

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — who earned a surprising third-place finish in New Hampshire — sat in fifth with 8.4%. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren trailed with 4.8% and billionaire Tom Steyer at 1.3%.

But 11.2% of voters also say they’re still undecided, meaning the race still has some shifting to do before the March 17 primary.

The contest will also be impacted by Super Tuesday on March 3, where Bloomberg has invested heavily. He has skipped the first four states — Iowa through South Carolina — entirely.

The St. Pete Polls survey sampled 3,047 likely voters.

Written By

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to ryan.t.nicol@gmail.com.

58 Comments

58 Comments

  1. William Kerwin

    February 14, 2020 at 8:36 am

    Do you how many New Yorkers have retired in Florida? He sure won’t get any votes from locals.
    +

    • Jack Carter

      February 14, 2020 at 8:39 am

      Never underestimate the power of stupidity in large crowds. Besides, just by being a demonrat, you never know what to expect. Today, it’s Micro Mike. Tomorrow, it could be Slow Joe, Buzzed Bernie, Puffing Pete or Lizard Liz.

      • Danny Alt

        February 14, 2020 at 11:57 am

        Do your parents know you’re not in your 7th grade classroom and trolling the internet instead ?

        • MisterGoldiloxx

          February 15, 2020 at 5:15 am

          Do your parents know you are sniffing glue and trolling the internet at the same time?

      • hingie

        February 14, 2020 at 11:59 am

        You got that right. To let someone buy an election due to hatred of a president that has done an awesome job for the country and the economy and all demographics as a whole is proof of democrats hatred for our country.

        MAGA 2020

        • Richard Fecker

          February 14, 2020 at 10:01 pm

          Turn of Faux News and tune in to the rest of the world.

          • MisterGoldiloxx

            February 15, 2020 at 5:14 am

            Turn off FakeNewsCNN and MSDNC and join the rest of the world. Those two together don’t have the ratings of Fox News!

      • Bill

        February 14, 2020 at 1:01 pm

        Spot on. But you also need to question the validity of the story.
        Polls are notoriously inaccurate.They only become relevant in October.

    • JOEL K GOODMAN

      February 14, 2020 at 9:38 am

      broward and miami=dade counties are 98% refugees from that asshole diblasio in NYshitty. If they canpick him and that dumcunt AOC they can pick anyone

      • joan mckniff

        February 14, 2020 at 1:47 pm

        98% from NYC is way too high. Have you noticed %s from Cuba, including 2nd and 3rd generation?

    • Tim Browne

      February 14, 2020 at 10:22 am

      Confused. He was elected Mayor of NYC TWICE. Apparently he had some supporters beyond the Black Pastors that he paid off? (Gotta love that, they do that in Chicago too)

      • A Morgan

        February 14, 2020 at 1:43 pm

        Bloomberg was elected three times very easily, comments appear to be mostly citizens do not read anything like Trump

        • MisterGoldiloxx

          February 15, 2020 at 5:17 am

          Blooms switched from being a Democrat, to Republican, to Independent, and now back to Democrat. He will be whatever it takes to win. Is that really what you want from a leader (a rich pander-bear)?

          • Jim1937

            February 15, 2020 at 8:42 am

            Reminds me of our great congress critter Charlie Do Nothing Crist.

          • Jay Capiche

            February 17, 2020 at 1:06 am

            The point here is beating Trump and FASCISM. VOTE BLUE NO MATTER WHO.

  2. Theo Monroe

    February 14, 2020 at 8:37 am

    What is this, a poll of Bloomberg’s family?

  3. Charmaine Smith

    February 14, 2020 at 9:07 am

    Bloomberg is Not for Blacks. His views on African American American Men ages 16-25 makes me cringe. Bloomberg is someone with money that Just decided to “Do something” ..what is he going to do for our country, “Things” he will do things. He will tell us what size sodas to drink, and he will pass horrible laws that affect the Black Youth. He is a Horrible Candidate, and I would never vote for him. He in unrelateble…he knows nothing about the inner city. All he is about is MONEY. He has no set views on Foreign Policy or Jobs and our Countries economic standing. Say No to Bloom. Say No.

    • A MORGAN

      February 14, 2020 at 1:52 pm

      You Must be right as he was born and lived in York city his entire life, glad i do not live in Florida

  4. Bob Jackson

    February 14, 2020 at 9:39 am

    Alert if you own property in Milwaukee go to Home Depot and prep for the coming riots. This is a warning.

  5. Bob

    February 14, 2020 at 10:05 am

    Bloomberg is complete garbage and nobody is going to vote for him

    • Justin Stark

      February 16, 2020 at 6:26 am

      And Any ‘Poll’ Indicating Otherwise Is Absurd.

  6. Acura

    February 14, 2020 at 10:15 am

    I love this field of Democrats! It ensures a landslide for Trump, aka our #BestPresidentEver

  7. Eugene Shults

    February 14, 2020 at 10:26 am

    If it’s Mike Vs. Donald it would be ex Repub vs. ex Democrat. Lol

    Would much much rather be stuck with Bloomberg than Sanders. I think most here can agree.

  8. Allen

    February 14, 2020 at 10:28 am

    So what are the positions that are distinguishing Bloomberg from his opponents? I have not heard anyone comment that they like Bloomberg because of his position on __________.

    • A Morgan

      February 14, 2020 at 1:38 pm

      You can find out by reading you know what that is right, wake up

    • George Poitras

      February 15, 2020 at 10:30 am

      No one knows Mike’s position on issues….He has avoided every debate and is just buying a place for himself. We New Yorkers know what a shithead he is though. And so do the New Yorkers that have moved south. He really has no chance of beating Sanders fairly. So he will cheat. And the DNC will help him.

  9. VANCE C BARNHILL

    February 14, 2020 at 10:42 am

    There are more gays than Jews so Bloomberg has no chance. Also he is not likable and is clearly out of touch with ordinary Americans not to mention that Trump has wrapped the racist label around his neck.

  10. Capitalism Wins

    February 14, 2020 at 10:51 am

    Do any of doomberg’s supporters know about his extensive support & involvement with COMMUNIST chinese government??! Guess they don’t mind being told what & how much to eat & drink!

    • Jim1937

      February 15, 2020 at 8:49 am

      He supports the left’s Chicken Little theme with his “Climate Change” aka “Sky is Falling” .

  11. jnobfan

    February 14, 2020 at 11:02 am

    I live in Jupiter. Between the NYC idiots who moved here with their politics in tow and the massive amount of Puerto Ricans that were give refugee status and voting rights since the hurricane it is very likely we will be a blue state from now on. Enjoy our next 4 years because 2024 starts New America starring Michelle Obama

  12. Teddysalad

    February 14, 2020 at 11:23 am

    Doomberg wants to be president to protect his billions invested in China, and to shield it from Bernie, that’s all. He’s a micromanager who wants to tell everyone how to live their own lives. Deep state corruption would blossom under a Bloomberg administration.

  13. gary

    February 14, 2020 at 11:24 am

    DOA!

  14. Cli

    February 14, 2020 at 11:26 am

    Bloomberg beats Biden should not be the headline. Biden is in fifth place so far. The headline should be, Mayor Pete Leads in Florida Poll.

  15. ralphie

    February 14, 2020 at 11:26 am

    blood is thicker than water

  16. TomasCruz

    February 14, 2020 at 11:32 am

    Stop and Frisk Bloomberg, I wonder how many black Americans are feeling it?

  17. Kitty Lenoir

    February 14, 2020 at 11:36 am

    Uh huh, and Biden was the front runner for months, until actual people started voting. Another mockingbird media propaganda sell.

  18. nearboston

    February 14, 2020 at 11:59 am

    He bought that third term as Mayor, he can buy Florida.

    Kiss your firearms and low taxes good-bye Floridians.

  19. Ruckweiler

    February 14, 2020 at 11:59 am

    In his billionaire dream he’s going to be president. A boring, self-righteous little man who has delusions of grandeur because he’s worth about $60 billion.

  20. Bill Asbell

    February 14, 2020 at 1:15 pm

    We all know the reason why leftist Dems in FL are going to vote for Bloomberg. It’s the same reason they gave all their money to Bernie Madoff. Being in the tribe trumps all other considerations. Truth is not PC.

  21. RightStuff1944

    February 14, 2020 at 1:55 pm

    Although I don’t know of any stronger candidate, I am confident that the Democrat Party will not allow Mike to be the Democrat candidate for 2020. He’s just not another Barack Obama.

  22. Tomas

    February 14, 2020 at 2:04 pm

    Meanwhile in Florida…

    “Oh LOOK!!! Another Bloomberg advertisement on TV!!!! It has been at least a minute since the last one.”

  23. J

    February 14, 2020 at 2:12 pm

    you mean the racist mike bloomberg? He is on tape talking stop and frisk. Make sure you go to the black neighborhoods that is where the crime is . His words. Good luck with that!

  24. Nick Cignetti

    February 14, 2020 at 2:21 pm

    Most polls have the answer before they do the polling.

  25. Dryden Wonne

    February 14, 2020 at 3:40 pm

    It will be totally amusing to see Bloomberg complete his purchase of the Democratic Party for what amounts to little more than a petty cash disbursement. Bloomberg is as small in physical stature as Napoleon but has the ambition to use his wealth to crown himself as the first American Tsar. The Bolshevik wing of the Democratic Party will come to loathe him after the DNCCCP finds a way to jettison Bernie for one last time. Should Bloomberg get the nomination, the democrats will have to put away all of their wealth and class envy dog whistles, and put all of their Chairman Mao paraphernalia into storage. Under Bloomberg, they will all become serfs.

  26. fhbdzf bnhgfnh

    February 14, 2020 at 5:24 pm

    If the Democrats cheat Bernie again at the convention (and it looks like they will. After all they changed the rules in mid-stream to let Bloomberg into the next debate), then all you Bernie supporters should then vote for Trump as revenge.

    • Rico

      February 14, 2020 at 10:37 pm

      Thinking about that

  27. lu mahalo

    February 14, 2020 at 8:37 pm

    Florida has been practically ruined by New Yorkers in many cases. Bloomberg…more of the same crappy ideas and attitudes.

  28. Ocean Joe

    February 14, 2020 at 8:54 pm

    Trump will beat Trump. His foul stench of dishonesty grows with every tweet.

  29. rici

    February 14, 2020 at 10:34 pm

    Its Bernie all the way in Florida only fools would deny that fact.

  30. Rico

    February 14, 2020 at 10:35 pm

    Its Bernie all the way in Florida only fools would deny that fact.

  31. Keith Stanton

    February 15, 2020 at 1:36 am

    I was born and raised in NY (Levittown, Long Island) and moved to Jersey when I was 7.(Essex County). Both staunch Democratic States. I left in 1970 to join the USAF and never went back. When I moved to FL in 1995 many people learning of my background asked me why I was so different than all the other NY/NJ types that moved there and why I didn’t seem to get along with them. My response was they were the ones we didn’t want up there either. That’s why Bloomberg leads. They moved to get away from the high taxes, BS regulations, crime, etc but in the end, they just brought that crap and their Democratic forever attitude with them. That’s why Bloomberg is ahead.

  32. John Cannon

    February 15, 2020 at 1:59 am

    What is scary is anyone who can buy an election!

  33. Zaphod4Prez

    February 15, 2020 at 2:38 am

    So how much did mayor Doucheberg pay for this survey? That’s why he’s spending his own money, so he doesn’t have to account for every dollar spent to the FEC. This means Doucheberg can get away with any dirty, rotten, underhanded trick, and can easily undermine anyone’s campaign. He can also buy polling data that shows him ahead, while he’s really lagging behind in last place. Big Gulps are more popular than Doucheberg.

  34. Daniel

    February 15, 2020 at 7:20 am

    2nd Amendment Mike won’t fly in Florida

  35. Jamesxx

    February 15, 2020 at 10:49 am

    Bloomberg: Only government should have guns. How did that work for the Jews and others?
    He wants to give money to Blacks….not to equally poor whites or asians or latinos etc etc
    By not being officially in race now he avoids embarassing questions from other Dem’s
    Now rumors he is considering Hillary… if so then she can have him killed and become President

  36. Ono

    February 15, 2020 at 10:56 am

    Mike, hang a necklace of garlic around your neck! re: your bs running mate hint. Shoot yourself in the foot MORE! Deplorables versus Deliriums!

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  38. tina pelosi

    February 18, 2020 at 7:43 pm

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