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 asharockman@tampabay.com.

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 have chance to beat Vikings in their third stadium

    Bucs

    Here's a cool sign that the Bucs are getting up there as an NFL franchise: If Tampa Bay can win Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium, it will mark the first time the Bucs have posted road wins against the same NFL opponent in three different stadiums.

    TIMES ARCHIVES (2012) | Bucs RB Doug Martin runs during Tampa Bay's 36-17 win at the Vikings in 2012, in what was then called Mall of America Field. If Tampa Bay wins Sunday, it will mark the first time they have road wins against the same NFL opponent in three different stadiums.
  2. Memorial for Snooty the manatee, postponed because of Irma, to be held Sunday

    Wildlife

    A public memorial to celebrate the life of 69-year-old Snooty the manatee will be held at the South Florida Museum on Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

    Snooty , the world's most celebrated manatee, begs for another slice of apple in his pool in the Parker Manatee Aquarium at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton in 2008. Snooty was 60 then. [Times 2008]
  3. Residents wade through a flooded road after the passing of Hurricane Maria, in Toa Baja, Puerto Rico, Friday, September 22, 2017. Because of the heavy rains brought by Maria, thousands of people were evacuated from Toa Baja after the municipal government opened the gates of the Rio La Plata Dam. [Associated Press]
  4. NFL commissioner, players' union angrily denounce Trump comments on national anthem

    Bucs

    SOMERSET, N.J. — The National Football League and its players' union on Saturday angrily denounced President Donald Trump for suggesting that owners fire players who kneel during the national …

    President Donald Trump walks off the stage after he speaks at campaign rally in support of Sen. Luther Strange, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Huntsville, Ala. [Associated Press]
  5. New earthquake, magnitude 6.1, shakes jittery Mexico

    World

    MEXICO CITY — A strong new earthquake shook Mexico on Saturday, causing new alarm in a country reeling from two still-more-powerful quakes this month that have killed nearly 400 people.

    Locals play pool at a venue in Mexico City's La Condesa neighborhood, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, four days after the 7.1 earthquake. The upscale Mexico City neighborhood was one of the hardest hit, with more than a half-dozen collapsed buildings in the immediate vicinity. The few Condesa residents who ventured out Friday night said they were anxious for relief from an anguishing week. [Associated Press]