Democrats Lead Most FL-Sen Match Ups

| Tom Jensen

PPP’s newest Florida poll finds Democrats leading 5 of 6 potential Senate match ups, although all of them are by narrow margins and there are a lot of undecided voters on the table because the candidates are so little known. Patrick Murphy leads the 3 top Republican contenders by an average of 7 points- David Jolly comes closest at 38/34, followed by Ron DeSantis at 41/33, and Carlos Lopez-Cantera 40/31.  Alan Grayson leads the top 3 Republicans by an average of 2 points- he actually trails Jolly at 38/35, but leads Lopez-Cantera 38/35 and DeSantis 40/34.

None of the candidates have even 50% name recognition at this point. Grayson’s the best known at 47% but it’s not necessarily a good thing as only 16% of voters see him favorably to 31% who have an unfavorable view of him. The rest have only 25-31% name recognition.

The big leader in both party’s primaries at this point is ‘undecided.’ On the Republican side 47% of voters have no current preference. David Jolly gets 26% to 14% for Ron DeSantis, 11% for Carlos Lopez-Cantera, and 2% for Todd Wilcox. On the Democratic side 45% of voters have no current preference, with Alan Grayson getting 33% and Patrick Murphy 22%.

Other notes from Florida:

-It looks like there’s a good chance the second time will be the charm when it comes to getting a medical marijuana initiative passed in Florida. 65% of voters say they’ll vote for one this fall to only 28% who are opposed, passing the 60% threshold with some breathing room. There’s bipartisan support for the measure with Democrats (75/18), independents (70/22), and Republicans (53/40) all expressing their favor for it.

-Florida is another great example of how the politics have changed on Obamacare. Voters in the state narrowly support it, 42% to 41%, a big departure from the old days when it used to be very unpopular in key swing states like Florida. There’s 47/31 favor for it among independents.

-Bill Nelson is Florida’s most popular politician, with a 40% approval rating to 32% of voters who disapprove of him. That puts him ahead of the perennially unpopular Rick Scott, who comes in at 38/48, and even further ahead of the newly unpopular Marco Rubio whose Presidential bid has hurt him at home and caused his approval spread to drop down to 31/55.

-Floridians take progressive stances on a trio of key issues we’ve been polling across the country. 76% of voters in the state support increasing the minimum wage to at least $10 an hour, compared to only 11% who think the status quo is fine and another 11% who would like to eliminate it altogether. That includes 92% support from Democrats, 74% from independents, and 62% from Republicans for going to at least $10 an hour. There’s also 69% support in the state for the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, with only 25% of voters opposing that. It has 86% Democratic, 72% independent, and 51% Republican support. And there continues to be a broad mandate for background checks on all gun purchases. There’s 86/8 support for that overall, including from 89% of Democrats, and 84% of both independents and Republicans.

-Finally we polled on some sports issues. When Florida State was in football national championship contention in 2013 and 2014 college sports loyalties in the state tightened some but now the Gators are well back ahead with 29% to 19% for the Seminoles, 12% for Central Florida, 10% for Miami, 5% for South Florida, 3% for Florida International, and 1% for Florida Atlantic.  Baseball loyalties in the state remain muddled as always, with the Braves and Rays leading the way at 13% to 12% for the Marlins, 10% for the Yankees, 9% for the Red Sox, 7% for the Cubs, 5% for the Mets, and 4% for the Phillies.  Finally we find that the Dolphins lead the way for NFL fandom in the state with 20% to 15% for the Buccaneers, 9% for the Packers, and 8% for the Patriots. The Jaguars can manage only a tie for 5th at 7% with the Cowboys in their home state, with the Giants at 4% and Jets at 2% rounding out the field.

Full results here

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