First Tidbits From The Exit Polls In Florida
… thanks to MSNBC.com and CNN.com…
– Most Important Issue: MSNBC’s exit poll report said nearly half of Republican voters cited the economy as the most important issue, with others far behind, and John McCain and Mitt Romney ran even among these voters.
– Moderates vs. Conservatives: McCain won 4 in 10 moderates, Romney 4 in 10 conservatives, but what was different this time in Florida compared to McCain-George Bush in 2000 was that Rudy Giuliani took moderate votes from McCain and Mike Huckabee took conservative votes from Romney.
– Immigration: Only one in five Republican voters cited illegal immigration as the biggest issue.
– Race: On the Democratic side, Barack Obama took more than three-fourths of the black vote and one-fourth of the white vote, while Clinton won among whites but got only small share of the black vote.
The exit polls as analyzed by CNN also said the economy was a key issue in the primary and that McCain came out on top of Romney, despite Romney’s efforts to sell himself as a succesful businessman. CNN also said that early exit polls showed that moderates who had been backing Giuliani had started to defect to McCain. But McCain faces a challenge on the other side of the spectrum, which is nailing down conservative Republicans.