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Adam Botana, Jason Maughan

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Poll: Adam Botana holds 16-point lead on Jason Maughan in HD 76

The lead looms larger among those who already voted.

The latest polling shows Adam Botana with a double-digit lead on Jason Maughan in a Southwest Florida House primary.

A St. Pete Polls survey of likely Republican voters in House District 76 found nearly 35% would vote for Botana is the primary were held today. Just over 19% would pick Maughan. Pollsters report a 5.6% margin of error.

That’s after both sides have pumped more than $300,000 into a race, selling their business background and loyalty to President Donald Trump — and on publicizing the other candidates’ arrest records.

With more than 46% of voters still undecided, there’s still room for Maughan to catch up, but time is running out before the Aug. 18 primary.

In fact, more than 46% of voters already cast their ballots, and there, Botana’s lead is even more overwhelming. More than 44% of voters who already cast their lot in the race say they picked the Estero businessman. Less than 15% say they voted for Maughan. Another 41% did not disclose or did not remember who they supported in the House race.

Of those who still plan to vote, Botana leads by a narrower 26% to 23%, with 51% will on the fence.

The candidates in the race have had to compete in a particularly noisy election cycle in Southwest Florida. Millions have gone into television air time for candidates running in Florida’s 19th Congressional District and hundreds of thousands more funded messaged in Senate District 27, both also open seats.

There’s another four open House races seeking attention from voters in Lee or Collier counties.

Botana also saw a late infusion of cash in his campaign coffers, with $38,350 donated shortly before the July 24 reporting deadline. Maughan had questioned the contributions, calling it open and brazen support from Big Sugar and mining, with $1,000 donations coming to Botana from groups like Growing Florida’s Economy and other agriculture interests.

Regardless, it means heading into the last week and a half of the campaign, Botana had $42,748 in cash on hand as of July 24. Maughan had $30,299, with a candidate loaning constituting $30,000 of that.

Maughan’s political committee, Friends of Jason Maughan, also has $21,751 available. The Botana-associated committee Conservatives for Clean Water, meanwhile, has about $45,880 still in the bank.

Written By

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at jacobogles@hotmail.com.

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