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Nelson, DWS & Smith Leading Dem Comeback in FL

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Adam Smith of the Tampa Bay Times recently polled politicos on the top three most influential Democrats leading the comeback in Florida, and the heavyweights include: U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, DNC Chair and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Florida Democratic Party Chairman Rod Smith. On the heels of 2011 mayoral victories in Tampa (deep in the heart of Florida’s I-4 battleground) and the GOP-stronghold of Jacksonville, these top Democrats are leading the charge in one of the nation’s most crucial battleground states in 2012.

The Buzz: Who are the most influential Democrats in Fla?

We recently put an intriguing question to participants of the Tampa Bay Times Florida Insider Poll, entirely uncertain whether a consensus would emerge: Who are the three most influential Democrats in Florida…

1. Sen. Bill Nelson — 38 votes. The two-term senator, 69, is an obvious choice as Florida's only statewide elected Democrat…

2. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz — 36 votes. As chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, the South Florida congresswoman, 45, is another obvious choice…

3. Rod Smith — 22 votes. The former prosecutor, state senator and gubernatorial candidate, 62, now chairs the Florida Democratic Party. Another statewide campaign is plausible.