How to Lose Momentum & Alienate Voters

Fan, shman, in the long run Florida isn’t crazy about either of these guys.



A campaign manager once told me that “it isn’t how much they [the voters] like you, just that they hate the other guy more.” That has been the battle cry in Florida’s gubernatorial race.


It’s no secret that Florida voters aren’t crazy for either the Democrat challenger Charlie Crist or Republican Gov. Rick Scott. But this is American Democracy, so you do the best with what you got. So as Floridians lie back and think of England during this gubernatorial race – it’s the midterms after all – both Crist and Gov. Scott found themselves in a dead heat entering last night’s debate.


Then well, this happened…



Five incredibly awkward minutes later, it was clear Crist had pulled ahead of Gov. Scott even before the debate had started. While Gov. Scott’s performance at the debate was actually quite strong, the damage had already been done. What is now known as #fangate on Twitter was already dominating the conversation.


It took less than an hour after the debate for the Crist campaign to send out a fundraising email stating “if you’re as amazed as I am by what you just saw, chip in a few bucks right now to make sure this guy doesn’t get to stay our governor.” Not to be outdone, Gov. Scott’s campaign also released a statement about the incident saying, “Charlie Crist can bring his fan, microwave, and toaster to debates — none of that will cover up how sad his record as governor was compared to the success of Rick Scott.”


It’s too early to tell if this is a Nixon/Kennedy moment for Gov. Scott, but to be honest it really doesn’t matter. In most credible surveys from Survey USA and CNN polls, the favorability of either candidate is well in the negatives. Whoever wins this race for governor, it will be because the other snatched failure from the jaws of victory.



(Photo Credit: Getty Images)


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