Presidential candidate Bob Dole leads his Republican rivals and would defeat President Bill Clinton by 8 percentage points, according to a poll of likely Florida voters.
Six months before the Florida GOP primary and two months before the state's GOP straw poll, Dole holds a 19-point lead over Phil Gramm and Pat Buchanan, who are tied for second place among the state's likely GOP primary voters, according to a Mason-Dixon Political-Media Research poll.
But it isn't all good news for Dole. With 30 percent of Republican voters still undecided, the Kansas senator's lead is vulnerable, according to the survey released Thursday.
The poll could foreshadow results of the Republican's Presidency III convention scheduled for Nov. 17-18 in Orlando. The event features a non-binding delegate poll, or straw poll, that is considered a key test of strength for the GOP contenders.
For Clinton, there was little to celebrate. The survey shows him on top only in a three-way race with Dole and retired Gen. Colin Powell. Even Gramm comes in ahead of Clinton in a head-to-head race in the poll paid for by several Florida news organizations.
Sixty-nine percent of those polled said they would either vote against Clinton or consider another candidate. Only 31 percent of respondents said they would vote for him.
The telephone survey was conducted in two parts.
The GOP findings were based on Sept. 9-10 interviews with 403 registered Republicans considered likely to vote in the Florida primary next March. That poll's margin of error is plus or minus 5 percentage points.
In the broader part of the survey, results came from interviews Sept. 5-6 with 420 Florida Democrats, Republicans and independents who said they were registered voters and usually vote in statewide elections. The survey's margin of error is 4.9 percentage points either way.