Gravis Marketing has released its fourth tracking poll of the key battleground state of Florida. This likely voter poll has margin of error of 2.8% (Democratic primary subsample has a margin of error of 4.5% and the Republican primary subsample has a margin of error of 4.2%). The poll was conducted from May 31stthrough June 15th through interactive voice responses and an online panel of cell phone users.
Voters have solidified opinions of President Trump since the previous Gravis Marketing poll in March. Trump’s favorable numbers improved from 41%-48% to 48%-52%. Approval numbers for Trump are a similar 49%-50%. Voters are split over the performance of their other elected officials. Governor Rick Scott is slightly below water at 48%-50% while Rubio is farther in the red at 39%-56%. Voters are mixed on incumbent Democratic Senator Bill Nelson at 47%-44%.
Voters are beginning to decide on choices for the August Gubernatorial primaries. Undecided levels fell from 60% to 43% on the GOP side and 64% to 27% on the Democratic side. The previous poll showed Philip Levine ahead in the Democratic field 13%-11% for Andrew Gillum and 9% for Gwen Graham. The new poll shows Gillum taking the lead at 29% with Philip Levine falling to third place at 17% and Gwen Graham rebounding to 24% in second place. Gillum appears to have weathered some damaging news cycles and is now leading the pack as voters are possibly responding well to his recent debate performance, though the June 9th debate was towards the end of the field period for this poll.
“Gillum is clearly performing well in the debates and Democratic primary voters are taking notice” said Gravis Marketing Managing Partner Doug Kaplan. “The progressive wing of the party is behind him in this very close race between Gillum, Graham and Levine. Billionaire Jeff Greene is about to shakeup the race with his campaign launch.”
In the Republican field, Adam Putnam has reclaimed the lead over Ron DeSantis 29%-19%. Richard Corcoran (4%) and Bob White (5%) are currently well behind the top-two. Kaplan remarked that “The attacks on DeSantis are obviously working. Opponents have poured in money to convince Republicans that DeSantis is weak on immigration and somewhat liberal.” Kaplan concluded that “We predicted that the attacks on DeSantis were underreported and he was being damaged. One question that is up in the air is whether Trump’s endorsement will be enough to overcome those attacks.”
Moving to the general election, Democrats appear to be gaining ground on retaking the Florida Governor’s Mansion for the first time since Lawton Chiles defeated Jeb Bush in 1994. While Gwen Graham is currently performing the best in general election match-ups, both Gillum and Levine hold leads as well. Graham leads Putnam 45%-39% and DeSantis 44%-34%. Gillum beats out Putnam 42%-39% and 38%-35% over DeSantis. Levine holds leads almost identical to Graham over Putnam 43%-39% and 43%-33% over DeSantis.
The best news for Democrats in this new poll comes from the Senate race where Bill Nelson now holds a 50%-40% lead over Rick Scott. This margin was a narrower 44%-40% in March. Nelson is winning 81%-12% among Democrats and 49%-32% among independents while Scott has winning Republicans 73%-21%. Florida’s Hispanic electorate is less liberal than the nation electorate. Scott leads Nelson 40%-32% among Hispanics despite trailing Nelson 73%-20% with African Americans and 49%-43% among Caucasians. Nelson does best among women (51%-39%), but still holds a lead among men (49%-41%).
Voters have soured on the Republican tax reform law. In March, support was 36%-37% and has now fallen to 38%-47%. Voters indicate that they are less likely to support a candidate that supported the bill by a 42%-36% spread.
Among various social issues, Florida voters are to the left of center. Voters oppose a complete abortion ban 53%-29%, a twenty-week ban 42%-39% and support LGBTQ protection from discrimination 55%-22%. They are, however, tightly split over support for sending the National Guard to the U.S.-Mexican border 45%-44%.
Uncertainty remains among three issue that will be put before voters in November. Support for the citizen initiative process being the exclusive method for authorizing casinos in Florida is split at 26%-25%. Restoring voting rights for felons sits just over the required 60% threshold at 61%-30%. Finally, voters support an initiative to ban all offshore drilling 52%-29%.
This poll is part of Gravis Marketing‘s regular 2018 Florida tracking polling and is not commissioned or influenced by any campaign, committee, or agency. However, for full transparency, Gravis Marketing has been engaged by CATECOMM for access to our poll tracking analysis and CATECOMM is affiliated with the Andrew Gillum for Governor campaign.
Previous Florida Polls March