U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is gaining ground in his home state of Florida and is now in second behind Donald Trump in a new survey of the GOP primary in the Sunshine State, while former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leads on the Democratic side.
Florida Atlantic University (FAU) released a poll on Wednesday which shows Trump leading with 32 percent of Florida Republicans while Rubio has leapt over former Gov. Jeb Bush, R-Fla., for second with 19 percent. Bush takes third with 11 percent while Dr. Ben Carson is right on his heels with 10 percent.
The other candidates are all in single digits. Businesswoman Carly Fiorina takes 8 percent followed by U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, with 6 percent. Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J., pulls 4 percent while U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., gets 3 percent. Gov. John Kasich, R-Ohio, receives 2 percent, the same as Gov. Scott Walker, R-Wis., who ended his campaign on Monday, after the poll was completed. Former Gov. Mike Huckabee, R-Ark,, takes 1 percent.
Kevin Wagner, an associate professor of political science at FAU, pointed to Rubio’s performance at last week’s presidential debate. Fiorina and Rubio won applause from pundits for their showings.
“The biggest winner from the debate among Florida voters may be Marco Rubio, who has jumped over both Jeb Bush and Ben Carson into second place,” Wagner said on Wednesday.
On the Democratic side, Clinton continues to hold a substantial lead, taking 60 percent of Florida Democrats. Vice President Joe Biden, who is considering entering the race, pulls second with 16 percent with U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., right on his heels with 15 percent.
The rest of the field is in low single digits. Former Gov. Martin O’Malley, D-Md., takes 2 percent while former U.S. Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., and former U.S. Sen. and Gov. Lincoln Chafee, D-R.I., take 1 percent each.
The poll of 352 likely Florida Republican primary voters was taken from Sept. 17-20 and had a margin of error of +/- 5.2 percent. The poll of 298 likely Florida Democratic primary voters was taken from Sept. 17-20 and had a margin of error of +/- 5.2 percent.
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