By Peter Schorsch
There’s some good news and some bad news for incumbent Rick Kriseman in the final poll of St. Petersburg’s mayoral race.
First, the good news for him: He’s leading Baker 47.5 to 45.6 percent.
Now, the bad news or just be-careful-what-you-hope-for news: Baker was leading Kriseman in the final poll of the primary phase of this campaign (although that poll was not conducted as close to Election Day as this poll)
Still, this latest survey from St. Pete Polls does show Kriseman with his biggest lead in any public poll, up from the less-than-a-percentage-point lead the polls showed two weeks ago.
It also shows him with a substantial advantage lead (49 to 33 percent) with the city’s black voters. If those kind of numbers hold up, it will be a long night for Baker, who went into this race believing he could win sixty to seventy percent of the black vote versus Kriseman.
There is at least one number Baker can be excited about: among those who say they have already voted, he holds the slightest of leads, 48.5 to 47.6 percent. Of course, Baker also led with early voters during the primary, but was swamped by an Election Day surge from Kriseman supporters.
The poll surveyed 939 residents who have already voted or plan to vote in Tuesday’s election.
The poll also asked about the three City Council races up for grabs. The latest results mirror previous polls.
In District 2, Realtor Brandi Gabbard has a 47 to 29 percentage lead over local banker Barclay Harless in the race to succeed term-limited Jim Kennedy.
In District 4, incumbent Darden Rice is more than doubling up her tomato can opponent, Jerrick Johnston. She’s at 58 percent to his 23 percent.
And in District 6, where Justin Bean and Gina Driscoll are competing to win term-limited Karl Nurse’s seat, Driscoll leads Bean by 13 points, 45 to 32 percent.