Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Times/Herald/Bay News 9 Poll

Scott still unpopular, but approval inches up in new Times/Herald/Bay News 9 poll

Gov. Rick Scott is working on his image, even dressing casual. In the poll, seven in 10 Republicans approve of his performance.

Associated Press (2011)

Gov. Rick Scott is working on his image, even dressing casual. In the poll, seven in 10 Republicans approve of his performance.

While Gov. Rick Scott remains generally unpopular, his months-long charm offensive and singular focus on jobs creation may be slowly winning Floridians over, according to a new Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald/Bay News 9 poll.

More than four in 10 Florida voters, 43 percent, approve of Scott's job performance a year into his first term; 47 percent disapprove; while 10 percent are not sure.

While these numbers are not fantastic — they remain worse than President Barack Obama's approval rating in the state, for example — they still represent a marked improvement for a man who took office facing an extremely polarized electorate.

"His numbers aren't great. He is still not where he needs to be in order to get re-elected," said Brad Coker, managing director of Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, which conducted the poll. "But people don't seem to have such a negative gut reaction.

"The makeover's working."

The telephone survey of 800 registered Florida voters — all likely to vote in the general election — was conducted Jan. 24-26 for the Times, Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald, Bay News 9 and Central Florida News 13. Mason-Dixon is a nonpartisan, Jacksonville-based company. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points.

The poll shows that more men than women approve of Scott's performance — 47 percent compared with 38 percent. And while Scott is popular in Republican-rich southwest Florida (51 percent approve compared with 38 percent who disapprove), the script flips in Democratic southeast Florida. There, just 33 percent of voters approve of the governor, compared with 58 percent who disapprove. Seven in 10 Republicans approve of Scott's performance; seven in 10 Democrats disapprove. In a separate question, voters were asked whether they recognize Scott favorably or unfavorably. Thirty-five percent of voters recognized the governor favorably, and 39 percent recognized him unfavorably.

In December a Quinnipiac University poll showed him at only 33 percent approval. Scott in recent months has reshaped his image in ways big and small — from ditching his dark business suits for khakis and casual button-down shirts, to reversing course on cuts to education funding, to blitzing talk radio shows across the state.

"He's politically playing smart and you're seeing his numbers improve," Coker said.

Aaron Sharockman can be reached at [email protected]

Scott still unpopular, but approval inches up in new Times/Herald/Bay News 9 poll 01/29/12 [Last modified: Monday, January 30, 2012 8:16am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bucs-Bills journal: Breakout game for Bucs tight end O.J. Howard

    Bucs

    ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — It's obscured by the final score and a disappointing loss, but Bucs rookie tight end O.J. Howard had a breakout game Sunday, exceeding his season totals for catches and touchdowns in one afternoon.

    Bucs tight end O.J. Howard (80) celebrates a touchdown catch with quarterback Jameis Winston (3) during the second half. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  2. Vladislav Namestnikov is Lightning's top-line 'secret'

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Nikita Kucherov is piling up the goals. Steven Stamkos is an assist machine. They make for an impressive pairing in a league that favors scoring pairs over the more traditional three-player scoring lines.

    Tampa Bay Lightning center Vladislav Namestnikov (90) reacts after scoring during the third period of the game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Florida Panthers at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla. on Friday, Oct. 6, 2017.
  3. Bucs-Bills report card: Grading the Bucs' 30-27 loss at Buffalo

    Bucs

    ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Hard to believe, but this was only the second time in their history that the Bucs played a regular-season game in Buffalo. After Sunday loss, they wouldn't mind going another 40 years without playing here again.

    Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter, seen during the first half, had a heck of a day calling plays, Tom Jones writes. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. Passing motorists pull three from burning home in Tampa

    News

    TAMPA — Two men in a passing car rescued two children and a woman from a burning home late Sunday morning.

  5. Bucs-Bills: Social media reactions to the Bucs' 30-27 loss

    Bucs

    Here's a sampling of reactions from the media and fans to the Bucs' 30-27 loss Sunday at Buffalo:

    Buffalo Bills kicker Stephen Hauschka (4) is mobbed by teammates after kicking the game-winning field goal late in the fourth quarter. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]