FORT PIERCE, Fla. — Fort Pierce is in the spotlight Monday as incumbent Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and Democratic challenger Charlie Crist square off in their only debate.
The debate will be held at 7 p.m. at the Sunrise Theatre.
The event was originally scheduled for Oct. 12 but was changed due to recovery efforts following Hurricane Ian.
Both sides are holding rallies in Fort Pierce ahead of the debate.
The St. Lucie GOP scheduled a "DeSantis Flag Wave" event in front of the Fort Pierce City Hall along U.S. 1 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Crist's campaign team is holding a pre-debate rally at 5:15 p.m. at the 500 Orange Event Center with Andrew Warren, the Democratic Hillsborough County state attorney who was suspended earlier this year by DeSantis.
Monday's debate comes at a time when early voting began today in many counties across the state for the Nov. 8 midterm election.
DeSantis leads race, according to FAU poll
A statewide poll released Friday by Florida Atlantic University said DeSantis was leading Crist by 11 percentage points.
The poll said that DeSantis was up 51% to 40% in the race for governor with the incumbent currently holding a 53% approval rating.
The survey of 719 Floridians also revealed that inflation was the most important issue to voters by a wide margin at 36%. Threats to democracy were the next most important issue at 19%. The FAU poll said only 9% of respondents felt abortion access was an important issue.