Updated: 2:55 p.m.
As his polling continues to lag and his Democratic primary race has heated up, Rep. Kendrick Meek’s Senate campaign on Thursday released a strategy memo that laid out the Congressman’s path to victory in the fall and sought to rein in talk that Democrats are embracing the Independent candidacy of Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.
In the memo, Meek campaign manager Abe Dyk makes the case that in a general election race against Crist and Republican Marco Rubio, Meek needs to simply consolidate support among Democrats — who make up 42 percent of the Florida electorate — to win in November.
But since he abandoned the Republican Party in late April, Crist has actively worked to find some room for growth within Democratic constituencies, and Washington and Florida media have been quick to note any instances where high-profile Democrats have raised money or promoted the governor’s Independent bid.
Dyk dismissed any talk that Democrats are abandoning Meek and made the case that Democrats will come home for the Congressman in the fall.
Though Dyk never mentions the fact that Meek continues to poll in the mid-teens in general election surveys, he does acknowledge that other campaigns have spent millions of dollars on campaign ads while Meek has yet to launch an ad. But Dyk predicts that any support for Crist among Democrats will crumble after Meek begins employing his $6 million-plus campaign war chest on radio and television spots that highlight how far Crist has strayed from the issues that are important to the Democratic base.
“Governor Crist has supported offshore oil drilling, has an anti-choice record, and opposed health care reform and champions repeal of the landmark legislation. His about face on serious policy issues are dizzying and not believable,” Dyk wrote.
He also predicts that Meek will come out of his August primary with an important boost of momentum.
Meek wasn’t expected to have much of a primary to speak of until billionaire real estate developer Jeff Greene announced his intention to enter the Democratic primary in April.
After a little more than a month in the race, Greene trailed Meek by just 2 points in an early June Quinnipiac poll.
But Dyk said any support Greene has shown has been manufactured by the millions of dollars he’s already spent. The Meek campaign has hit Greene for making money off uncovered credit default swaps and betting against Florida homeowners, and Meek advisers believe that background will sink Greene’s campaign, even if he spends the $40 million he said he would on the primary.
“In a year when there is so much anger at Wall Street, it’s likely that no candidate in the country has a bigger biographical barrier to election than someone who helped wreck the economy … [at the expense of] middle-class homeowners. … Kendrick’s message will only be strengthened by Jeff Greene’s primary challenge because these are the same messages that will propel Kendrick to victory against two Republicans in the fall,” Dyk wrote.
So the race will come down to Crist, Rubio and Meek, and Dyk said he likes the matchup because it essentially pits two Republicans against one Democrat.
“Whereas Rubio stands for a lot of things that are wrong and far outside the mainstream, no one really knows what Governor Crist really thinks about any single issue,” Dyk wrote.