Daniella Levine Cava’s internal poll shows her leading tight contest in next week’s mayoral election

Daniella Levine Cava
The race is likely headed for a runoff between the top two vote-getters in the primary.

A new survey commissioned by Miami-Dade County mayoral candidate Daniella Levine Cava shows three candidates vying for two runoff spots ahead of next week’s election.

The survey, conducted by Change Research, has Levine Cava receiving 25% support. Miami-Dade County Commissioner Esteban “Steve” Bovo earned 21%, while former Mayor Alex Penelas netted 20% support.

If no candidate receives a majority of the vote in the Aug. 18 election — a high likelihood in the seven-person field — the top two candidates will advance to the Nov. 3 runoff.

Levine Cava’s lead is within the poll’s margin of error of 4.5 percentage points. The new results are similar to a previous survey Levine Cava’s campaign released in late July. That version showed Levine Cava with 26% support and had Bovo and Penelas both earning 22% support.

The newest version of the survey ran Aug. 3-6 and sampled 473 likely primary voters.

Miami-Dade Commissioner Xavier Suarez received just 9% of the vote. The remaining three candidates — Carlos Antonio De Armas, entrepreneur Monique Nicole Barley and real estate agent Ludmilla Domond — courted only 4% of the vote.

Another 22% of voters were undecided, meaning that block could very well decide the race on Aug. 18.

The poll comes just one day after an internal Penelas survey showed him in the lead. His lead was also within the margin of error.

Internal polls should not be blindly trusted, as campaigns have an incentive to withhold internal polls with poor results and publicly release only those favorable to their bid.

Both surveys do show Levine Cava, Penelas and Bovo atop the field, with Suarez a clear fourth and the other three candidates well behind.

The Penelas survey showed all four candidates with positive favorability ratings among voters who had yet to cast their ballots.

Levine Cava’s poll tested favorability among all respondents and told a different story. Unsurprisingly, Levine Cava fared best with a +10 favorability rating. Bovo placed second at a +3 rating. Both Suarez and Penelas were underwater, with Penelas at -9 and Suarez at -11.

The Levine Cava survey showed 35% of respondents had already voted. Among that subgroup, Levine Cava led with 31% support, followed by Penelas at 25%, Bovo at 20% and Suarez at 12%. The remaining three candidates secured 4% of the vote while 8% declined to reveal their choice.

Ryan Nicol

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 [email protected].


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