SAINT LEO, Fla., Dec. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The two most popular politicians among Florida voters are New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to a new poll by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute.
Clinton, a Democrat, is viewed favorably by 59 percent of Florida likely voters and unfavorably by 37 percent, for a net favorability rating of +22. Christie, a Republican, has a favorability rating of 55/29, for a net favorability rating of +26. This compares to Vice President Joe Biden's favorability rating of 50/44 (+6) and that of former Republican vice presidential nominee and current U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin (39/40 (-1).
Should Clinton run for president, she would receive a warm embrace from Florida Democrats. Clinton's favorability rating among Democrats stands at 91 percent, with just 6 percent taking an unfavorable view of her. Nine in 10 Democrats (89 percent) said they would consider supporting her, if she ran for president. Comparatively fewer said the same about Biden (34 percent).
Christie has competition for the affections of Republican primary voters. Slightly more likely-voter Republicans say they could support Jeb Bush (44 percent), the former governor, and current U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (42 percent), if they were to run than Christie (38 percent). U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky (30 percent), Paul Ryan (28 percent), and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas (24 percent) also have large numbers of voters who say they could support them.
In the Florida governor's race, former Gov. Charlie Crist holds a 46-34 percent lead over incumbent Gov. Rick Scott. Scott's numbers are weighed down in part by some cracks in his own base. While 68 percent of Republicans have a favorable view of Scott, just 59 percent of Republicans say they would re-elect him. A significant percentage of Republicans hold an unfavorable view of Scott (24 percent) and 17 percent say they plan to vote for Republican-turned-Democrat Crist.
The survey put Florida's U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson's approval rating at 48/33 (+15) and his re-elect rating at 43 percent. Senator Marco Rubio's approval ratio is 45/41 (+4) with a 40 percent re-elect rating.
SOURCE Saint Leo University Polling Institute