Mitch Perry Report 3.11.14 - This $12 million dollar race is going to end tonight


Good morning from the political capital of the world today. 

Let's note this: As of this morning, there are 232 Republicans in the House of Representatives, 199 Democrats. A victory by David Jolly or Alex Sink won't change the divide that much between the two parties going into November. So why so much attention?

Well, we all know why by now. But let's be honest, this seat is not worth the nearly $12 million that has been spent on the race so far (technically, $11,977,827  according to information compiled by the Sunlight Foundation). I'm not sure how much a Congressional seat is worth, but really. $12 million?

A total of 26 percent of eligible voters in the District have already voted, or nearly 125,000 people.

On a one-to-one level, Alex Sink has outspent David Jolly by a more than 2:1 ratio (not 3:1, as MSNBC's Chuck Todd said this morning). But the outside groups have come to Jolly's aid, basically making it an even financial fight. 

Chuck Todd said something else interesting this morning — how Alex Sink has basically been the Florida bench over the past decade. At least that's what Washington D.C. thinks, as they gave her a call after the late Bill Young died last October, surmising that she was the best Democrat in the region (not in the district!) who could defeat any Republican challenger, not Jessica Ehrlich, who was gearing up and gaining endorsements for another run this year.

But I've got a question for Washington, and Pinellas County Democrats. What happens if Jolly defeats Sink tonight? Since most of us think the contest is going to be extremely close, will Sink run again in November? And would there be enmity toward her, considering how she was the "stronger candidate" (as Todd, Joe Scarborough, Mark Halperin and most of the national media continue to call her going into today's contest) that blew an election to the lesser-known Jolly?  And would Sink even want to run again?

Obviously that's getting ahead of ourselves. I'm not about to make a prediction, because I literally don't know what's going to happen. But as we wrote last week, this seat will be another Battle Royale come November, though not nearly as newsworthy.

In other news...

Sink and Democrats have tried to make Jolly's opposition to Paycheck Fairness an issue, and a feminist group was thwarted recently from its attempt to place an ad blasting such lawmakers for their opposition in the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport.

A representative from the Florida ACLU's office will be attending the U.N. Committee on Human Rights in Geneva later this week, where she will be talking about Florida's policy on banning ex-felons from automatically getting their voting rights restored after they've paid their debts to society.

And Cesar Hernandez, an activist and former student body president at USF, is now working for Tampa City Councilwoman Lisa Montelione.

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