Q Poll: Crist, 50 vs. Rubio, 35; McCollum, 36 vs. Sink, 32
A new Quinnipiac poll finds Charlie Crist's lead over Marco Rubio for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination has been cut in half in recent months.
"Gov. Charlie Crist's lead, which had been 29 points August 19, has come back down to earth. His margin is still formidable, but obviously Marco Rubio's focus on convincing Republican conservatives that he, not Crist, is their kind of guy is bearing fruit," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
"Among Republicans, 44 percent view Rubio favorably, 3 percent unfavorably, up from 24 - 6 percent August 19. But fully half don't know enough about him to have an opinion. Filling in that blank slate for that half of GOP voters -- positively by Rubio and negatively by Crist -- will decide the nomination.
"Floridians now give Crist the worst overall job approval of his governorship, 59 - 31 percent, but governors of many other states would sell their first born -- or at least their running mate -- for numbers like that," said Brown. "But because only Republicans can vote in the GOP primary, Rubio's strong favorable/unfavorable ratio among Republicans is something that should worry the Governor."
Bill McCollum benefits from not only better name recognition than Alex Sink, but a higher job approval than she enjoys. Voters approve 53 - 19 percent of McCollum's performance as attorney general; by 38 - 23 percent they give Ms. Sink a thumbs up as CFO.
"McCollum retains a lead, but almost a quarter of the electorate is undecided, giving Ms. Sink plenty of opportunity with 13 months until Election Day," said Brown. "As far as the Republican gubernatorial nomination goes, Ms. Dockery has a long, long way to go to become competitive."