A new poll of the race for House District 5 shows Shane Abbott leading the field by more than 10 points.
According to St. Pete Polls, the Defuniak Springs Republican is pulling 26% support in the three-way race while fellow Republicans Clint Pate and Vance Coley polling at 15% and 6%, respectively.
The poll also showed more than half of voters living within the district have not yet decided who they will vote for, leaving the door cracked for Pate or Coley to catch up to Abbott in the coming weeks.
The survey was conducted Wednesday. The sample includes registered voters who told the pollster they planned to vote in the upcoming Primary Election for the Northeast Florida seat. Voters who had stated that they were not likely to vote in the August open primary election were excluded from the results.
Though all three candidates are Republicans, all voters who live in the Northwest Florida district will be able to cast a ballot in the Aug. 23 Primary Election because no Democrats, third-party or no-party candidates qualified for the race.
The poll sample reflects this by including 53 Democrats and 15 unaffiliated voters in addition to 81 Republicans. St. Pete Polls weighted the results based on voters’ politial party, race, age and gender. The topline numbers have a margin of error of plus or minus 8%.
In addition to favorable polling, Abbott’s base of support includes many influential outside groups. Most recently, the pharmacy owner received an endorsement from the Florida Fraternal Order of Police District 1, the local chapter of the world’s largest police union.
He does not have a monopoly on law enforcement groups, however, as Coley was endorsed by the Police Benevolent Association in April.
Abbott filed for the race to succeed term-limited HD 5 Rep. Brad Drake in February 2021. Post-redistricting, HD 5 covers Holmes, Jackson, Walton and Washington counties, as well as part of Calhoun County.