WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- A USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll found Florida Republicans prefer their governor, Ron DeSantis, over former President Trump to lead the country.
- DeSantis now leads Trump in a hypothetical 2024 presidential primary in Florida.
- Neither Trump nor DeSantis has made any official announcements that they will run for president in 2024.
Former President Donald Trump’s appeal among Florida Republicans has significantly eroded, according to a USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll. Meanwhile, Gov. Ron DeSantis has been gaining support from his constituents.
DeSantis now leads Trump 48%-40% in a 2024 presidential primary poll in Florida. In January, USA TODAY/Suffolk Poll of Florida showed Trump leading DeSantis 47%-40%.
“This doesn’t necessarily mean DeSantis would lead in any other GOP primary state,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center. “But it is one data point suggesting a shift in preferences from GOP voters away from Trump and toward DeSantis from Republicans who know both potential combatants quite well.”
Both the Florida governor and the former president have said they are considering presidential campaigns in 2024. However, neither has made an official announcement about launching a campaign. For DeSantis supporters, the governor is equally popular with Trump without the legal and other baggage that the former president carries.
DeSantis received criticisms last week after he used state funds to send about 50 migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard, an exclusive island in Massachusetts.
The USA TODAY/Suffolk University poll also found that DeSantis leads Democratic challenger Charlie Crist 48%-41% for the governorship. Crist, a Republican-turned-Democrat, has served as governor and in Congress.
Though President Joe Biden’s approval rating has increased in the Sunshine State, Trump still edges him in the state 47%-44%. DeSantis leads Biden by a wider margin, 52%-44%.
A third of the respondents say that the major issue on voters’ minds is inflation and the economy, That may account for their more downbeat mood compared with the beginning of 2022. The percentage who say they are “worse off” than they were four years ago has increased to 49% from 39%.
Respondents who say the U.S. is “on the wrong track” climbed to 67% now from 58% then.
On the eleven issues the poll listed, threats to democracy rank second, at 13%, and abortion rights is third, at 11%. Twenty-one percent of Democrats rated abortion rights as their top concern.
Source: Yahoo! News