August 12, 2022

Press Release

Florida Governor's Race Too Close To Call, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Big Gender And Racial Gaps

| 9/5/2018

Desantis and Gillum

The Florida governor's race is too close to call, with 50 percent of likely voters for Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, the Democrat, and 47 percent for U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, the Republican, according to a Quinnipiac University Poll released today.

There are wide gender and racial gaps, as men back DeSantis 52 - 45 percent, while women back Gillum 55 - 42 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll finds. White voters go Republican by a narrow 52 - 45 percent, as black voters go Democratic 93 - 2 percent. Hispanic voters go 56 percent for DeSantis and 43 percent for Gillum.

Republicans back DeSantis 92 - 6 percent, as Democrats back Gillum 93 - 3 percent. Independent voters go to Gillum 55 - 42 percent.

Among Florida likely voters who name a candidate choice, 94 percent say their mind is made up.

Gillum gets a 46 - 33 percent favorability rating, while DeSantis gets a split 45 - 43 percent favorability rating.

Florida likely voters give President Donald Trump a slightly negative 47 - 51 percent job approval rating.

"Mayor Andrew Gillum came out of his upset victory in the Florida Democratic primary with a head of steam," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"That momentum shows itself as Gillum hits 50 percent in a neck-and-neck match-up with Republican U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis for the four-year lease on the governor's mansion."

"Neither man was well-known before their primaries, but since then the race has become a center of political attention in the state."

"Now, 97 of voters say they will vote for one of the two men, a highly unusual situation this far from the actual voting. Just as unusual, more than 90 percent of Gillum and DeSantis voters say they will not change their minds and are dead set in supporting the candidate they now favor," Brown added.

There is little "Trump effect" in the Florida governor's race as 22 percent of voters say their decision in the race will be more to express support for the president and 24 percent say their vote for governor will be more to express opposition. But 51 percent say Trump is not an important factor in the governor's race.

The economy is the most important issue in their vote for governor, 23 percent of Florida likely voters say, with 14 percent each for immigration and health care, 13 percent for gun policy, 12 percent for the environment and 10 percent for education.

Florida likely voters are divided on whether they like DeSantis' positions on issues, as 47 percent say yes and 45 percent say no.

Voters like DeSantis as a person 40 - 33 percent.

By a narrow 46 - 42 percent, voters like Gillum's positions on issues and like him as a person 49 - 13 percent.

From August 30 - September 3, Quinnipiac University surveyed 785 Florida likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 4.3 percentage points, including the design effect. Live interviewers call landlines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts nationwide public opinion surveys, and statewide polls in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa and Colorado as a public service and for research.

For full poll results, click to download PDF.

Tags: Government/Politics & Law, Election 2018

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