Republican Brian Mast internal poll says he leads Randy Perkins in Congress race

PBPO News:

Palm Beach-Treasure Coast congressional district 18 candidates (from left to right): Republican Brian Mast; Democrat Randy Perkins; no-party candidate Carla Spalding.

According to Masts pollster, Brian Mast, Republican congressional candidate, has beaten Randy Perkins in the nationally viewed race for the Palm Beach Treasure Coast District 18 U.S. House Seat.

Perkins is trailing Mast by 47 to 40 percent in a poll of 400 voters conducted by Republican pollster Jim McLaughlin. The poll had a margin of error of 4.9 percent and was conducted between Tuesday and Thursday. The poll shows Carla Spalding, a no-party candidate, getting 6 percent. There are 7 percent who are undecided.

According to a pollster, Republican Brian Mast’s numbers have increased since he started running positive TV ads such as this one.

According to Republican Brian Masts, his numbers have increased since he started running positive TV ads such as this one.

Since a McLaughlin poll was conducted September 12-14, Perkins had a 41 to 40 percent lead. This is a virtual tie considering the poll also had a 4.9 % margin of error. This September poll was conducted just before Mast started airing his first TV ads for general elections.

Mast has improved but Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is sinking. District 18 was won by Republican Mitt Romney in 2012. In the September poll of District 18, voters, Trump outnumbered Hillary Clinton 46 to 40. Clinton has now a 46 to 44 percent advantage. This is an 8 point swing.

Representative Patrick Murphy (D-Jupiter), is now representing District 18. He is leaving to challenge Republican Sen. Marco Rubio. According to McLaughlin poll, Rubio has a slim 48-to-45% lead over Murphy in Murphy’s home district.

Masts has run positive ads in the last month emphasizing Perkins’ military service. He lost his legs in Afghanistan after a bomb explosion in 2010. Outside groups have also run ads attacking Perkins, despite Masts positive ads.

Randy Perkins, Democrat, in one of his campaign ads.

McLaughlins polling memo indicates that Perkins’ unfavorable rating has increased from 11 per cent in the September poll, to 28 per cent in the current survey. According to the memo, Perkins is positively viewed by 32 percent.

McLaughlin’s memo does not mention Masts favorable or unfavorable ratings. Perkins has airing ads that attack Mast as a conservative, in the same mold of former U.S. Rep. Allen West or radio host Mark Levin. Both are well-known for their fiery brand of conservatism which District 18 voters rejected when Murphy was elected in 2012.

According to a Saturday Federal Election Commission report, Perkins contributed $5.8million of his own money to his campaign from Sept. 30 through Sept. 30, according the report. Mast has raised over $2 million and spent $1.6 million. The National Republican Congressional Committee contributed $1.9 million while the Conservative Leadership Fund contributed $1.8 million.

As of August 30, primaries, Republicans held a 38.1-to-34.6% registration advantage over Democrats in District 18. In addition to favoring Republican Romney and Democrat Murphy in 2012, District 18 also confirmed its swing district status in 2014 with Murphy’s re-election by 19.6 percent despite huge GOP gains across the country.