POLITICS

Rick Scott Defeats Charlie Crist In Florida Governor's Race

Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) narrowly defeated former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (D) in one of the nation's most competitive gubernatorial contests Tuesday.

Scott, a former healthcare executive who was first elected in 2010, was considered one of the country's most vulnerable governors after years of low approval ratings. Crist switched to the Democratic Party in December of 2012 after having identified as a Republican for decades.

The race between Scott and Crist was one of the country's most expensive, with some $112 million spent on television advertising and a total price tag of more than $150 million.

It was also close: when Crist called Scott to concede the race some time around 11:20 p.m. on Tuesday, he trailed 46.9-48.3 with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, Scott had strong support from white and older voters, while he lost ground with Latinos:

Exit polls conducted for the Associated Press and networks found that Crist was strongest among African-Americans, Hispanics, moderates and younger voters. African-Americans supported Crist over Scott by an almost 8-to-1 margin, and Crist's support among Hispanics was almost 20 points higher than it was for Scott. In fact, Scott's support among Hispanics dropped by around a dozen points compared to the 2010 gubernatorial race. Crist also appealed to voters under the age of 40, and also voters who identified themselves as "moderate."

The Crist campaign on Tuesday afternoon filed a request for two hours of extended voting in heavily Democratic Broward County, claiming that “individual and systemic breakdowns ... made it difficult for voters to cast regular ballots.” Broward's Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes told the Miami Herald that none of the issues, which included a power outage at one precinct, kept anyone from voting.

A judge denied the request, and Crist didn't address any voting issues in his post-concession speech to supporters.

"Thank you to everyone who was a part of this incredibly journey," he wrote on Twitter.

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