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New Poll: Crist in Pole Position

A "double" what? Sorry, I don't speak French. Just check out the Strategic Vision poll released yesterday on Florida's 2010 U.S. Senate race. It attaches numbers to some obvious truths, such as Gov. Charlie Crist getting 54 percent of the votes against other prospective candidates in a Republican primary. The poll, which interviewed 1,200 likely voters last week, has Crist routing all Democrat nominees, too.

The surprise among the Democrats is Pam Iorio, Democrat mayor of Tampa, whose 29 percent against Crist makes her a slightly better match-up than congressmen Kendrick Meek and Ron Klein (who's yet to declare) and Florida Sen. Dan Gelber. Will this poll be the nudge she needs to announce her candidacy?

Polls this far in advance of an election are all about name recognition, a factor that's going to put Crist way ahead. Thing is, shouldn't Meek, Gelber and Klein all have more name recognition than Iorio, considering they're state and federal officials who are known commodities in the more populous South Florida? For those three candidates, this poll reminds them they'll have to spend a lot of time pressing the flesh in Tampa Bay, Orlando, and Pensacola. No one said this was going to be easy, guys.

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Thomas Francis

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