TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) — As voters across Florida begin to cast their ballots, candidates for one of the most contentious races will face off tomorrow in a debate.
Sen. Marco Rubio and Congresswoman Val Demings will meet face to face tomorrow for the Senate debate dubbed “Before you vote.”
This senate race has garnered national attention for months and Tuesday is a critical day for both Rubio and Demings as they take the stage for their one and only debate ahead of Election Day.
“The debate allows for the alignment of political advertising with the messaging in the debate setting. The difference though is the opportunity for response” Dr. Josh Scacco, political communications professor at the University of South Florida, said.
Throughout Demings’ campaign to unseat incumbent Rubio, she has drilled into her opponent’s position on reproductive rights. While Rubio highlights a declining economy.
“It’s gonna be a really big battle. They’ll probably fall back on usual kinds of issues. For Demings, it’ll be most likely abortion, as is true of a lot of Democrats,” Political Analyst Dr. Susan MacManus, from USF, said. “He’ll, [Rubio] like other Republicans, focus first and foremost on the tanking of the American economy at the time when inflation is rising.”
Some political analysts say this final push is all about mobilizing voters. “We’re getting to the particular place in the campaign where the small pool of persuadable voters is shrinking by the day – with those dynamics in place, essentially what the contest becomes is mobilization,” Scacco said.
“Money speaks to importance and if you look at the money that both Rubio and Demings have generated for this race, it absolutely says that Florida is key to each party’s calculus of how they can control the US Senate in the next session,” MacManus said.