Rick Scott Claims He Did Better With Hispanic Voters Than Media Reported

Rick Scott is saying he actually won the Hispanic vote over Charlie Crist in November, contradicting most exit polls that reported Crist had won the Hispanic vote by double digits.

According to Scott's own internal polling, Crist won only 49 to 47 percent among Hispanics, which differs greatly from the exit polls used by the media following the election.

The poll was conducted by OnMessage Inc., a polling firm hired by the Scott campaign. While most exit polls were conducted on Election Day, OnMessage conducted its poll between November 10 and 12, a week after the election.

Edison Research, the exit poll used by most of the media, particularly CNN, said Crist won the Hispanic vote 66-31. It also broke things down and showed that Cuban voters favored Crist 50-46.

But OnMessage shows a different picture, saying Scott won the Cuban vote 65-30.

"While an array of news articles point to a Rick Scott victory 'despite losing ground with Hispanics,' that's simply not true," says an OnMessage polling memo released today.

"When the Hispanic vote is broken down by county of origin, we find that Governor Scott won a sizable majority of Cuban voters as well as more Puerto Rican voters than many expected. In the end, most Hispanic voters were focused on the economy, and they decided that under Governor Scott's leadership, the state's real estate and job markets are headed in the right direction," the memo also states.

The OnMessage poll, which spoke with 1,000 voters and has a 3.1 percent margin of error, shows Crist's win with Hispanics was only by the slimmest of margins.

According to the Miami Herald, however, the sample size of Hispanic voters contacted by OnMessage was 304. And the Palm Beach Post says the margin of error for the Hispanic subgroup contacted wasn't immediately available.

According to the Herald's Marc Caputo, a third survey, Latino Decisions, polled 400 voters on the eve of the election and showed Crist led Scott 52-45 percent. According to this poll, that would fall somewhere between the OnMessage and Edison surveys.

OnMessage Poll by Chris Joseph

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Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph