MIAMI – As the November election approaches, new polls indicate the race between Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Val Demings, the former chief of the Orlando Police Department, is nearly side by side.
Rubio is leading the race against Demings by just two percentage points, according to the Civiqs poll released on Thursday, and by just three points, according to The USA Today/Suffolk University poll released on Wednesday.
According to the Civiqs poll, 49% of voters said that if the election was held today they would vote for Rubio compared to the 47% who said they would vote for Demings. According to The USA Today/Suffolk University poll, 45% would vote for Rubio and 41% for Demings.
Attorney Marlon Hill, a partner with Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel, LLP, is a former Miami-Dade County Commission candidate, and a member of the South Dade Democratic Black Caucus-Ron Brown Chapter. He remains optimistic about Demings.
“As an incumbent, I think he should be concerned because this is going to be one of the most competitive races on the ballot,” said Hill, who is Jamaican American.
Abortion could be a defining issue. Demings said she supports abortion before fetal viability, which is defined at about 24 weeks of pregnancy. Rubio co-sponsored a bill to ban abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy with exceptions for rape and incest.
According to The USA Today/Suffolk University poll, Demings was ahead of Rubio among women by about seven percentage points.
Giancarlo Sopo, the founder of Visto Media, a strategic communications consultancy, led the Hispanic communication advertising for former President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign.
“I think undoubtedly the Dobbs decision gave the Democrats a little bit of an electoral boost in states like Pennsylvania, but Florida is very different ... The people of Florida clearly tend to prefer Marco Rubio. I think he had been a very effective senator,” said Sopo, who is Cuban American.
Rubio’s campaign released a statement saying voters need to remember Demings votes 100% of the time with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Demings’s campaign released a statement defining the tight race simply as being between “a cop on the beat” and “a career politician.”