Saturday, February 26, 2005

“Get Me Those Puppies!”

Look who’s thinking about running for the Senate in Florida:

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, the only Democrat to hold statewide office in Florida, knows he’s “one of the main targets” of the Republican Party in next year’s free-for-all elections.

And a new poll shows the GOP’s best weapon to date: Katherine Harris, the Sarasota Republican congresswoman who gained worldwide attention for managing Florida’s election machinery during the 2000 presidential election troubles.

Harris is almost within striking distance of Nelson, who has broad support and name recognition but has not clearly made the case to voters that he should be reelected, according to a poll by Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University of 1,007 Floridians.


Harris would capture 26 percent of the overall vote were she to run for the Senate, according to the poll. It says 37 percent of people want to reelect Nelson and 37 percent want “someone else.”

Harris said the favorable poll results surprised her. She said she was “at least six months away” from deciding on whether to run for higher office. She said she’s focusing on a “huge agenda” to help poor people pay for their first home and to crack down on crimes against children.

Thanks to her, uh, interesting fashion sense and hardbitten partisanship during the 2000 Florida recount, Harris earned the nickname Cruella De Vil. No surprise from the state that brought you Disney World. But lock up the Dalmatians.