Political Observer Says Davis Didn't Deliver Knockout Punch

TAMPA -

USF political science professor Daryl Paulson scored the debate as fairly even between the two candidates. They both responded well to attacks and got their points across to the voters.

Paulson says Democrat Jim Davis had limited success trying to morph Charlie Crist from his self-described position as a 'Ronald Reagan Republican' into a follower of George W. Bush. And Crist held his own as a moderate Republican with a populist twist.

PAULSON: Davis clearly has to make up ground. He did very well, he was less wooden than he normally is in debates. But did he strike a major blow against Crist? I don't think so. I didn't see it.

Paulson also said a recent poll that had Davis trailing Crist by only 2 percentage points doesn't jibe with other polls. Those have the Republican attorney general leading the Tampa congressman by as much as double digits.

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