February 18th, 2009
01:08 PM ET
5 years ago

Poll: Crist frontrunner for Florida Senate nomination

Crist is enjoying strong approval ratings despite the poor economic conditions in his home state of Florida.
Crist is enjoying strong approval ratings despite the poor economic conditions in his home state of Florida.

(CNN) – A new poll indicates Florida Gov. Charlie Crist would be the immediate frontrunner for the Republican nomination should he decide to run for Senate in 2010.

If Crist were to jump into an already crowded Republican primary, a Quinnipiac poll suggests he would immediately freeze out the competition. In a hypothetical match-up, Crist leads his next closest GOP rival - Rep. Connie Mack IV - by a 53 to 13 percent margin.

Others mulling a Senate bid, including former Florida House speaker Marco Rubio and Rep. Vern Buchanan, each garner five percent or less in a race with Crist.

Crist can also count on job security if he opts to remain in Tallahassee instead: if he were to stay out of the Senate battle and seek the governorship once again, nearly 60 percent of voters say he deserves another term. Voters also want him to stay. A plurality believe Crist should seek re-election as governor and not run for Senate.

Crist is buoyed by a 68 percent approval rating among voters, which includes the support of 65 percent of Democrats. And although Crist angered some within his party for his vocal support of President Obama’s stimulus package, he retains the support of 77 percent of Republican voters.

The poll hints that Democrats will face an uphill battle in the Senate race no matter who wins the Republican nomination: Among the many Democrats seeking the seat, none appear to be well-known among voters statewide.

The Quinnipiac poll of 1,001 Florida voters was conducted February 11-16 and has a margin of error of 3.1 percent.


Filed under: Charlie Crist • Florida
soundoff (101 Responses)
  1. alvino

    Crist is a good choice for the senate. He will represent FL well.

    February 18, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  2. Dutch/Hampton Roads, VA

    I don't know what to say. Charlie Crist is one of the few republican governor's who agreed to the stimulus bill. If he has that kind of decision making while he's in the Senate, I believe he would reach across the aisle to get things done. He can teach a thing or two to his republican colleagues.

    February 18, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  3. Judy

    I'm a die-hard democrat and I would consider voting for Gov. Crist! He showed his love of country, his committment to the people of his state, and his courage last week when he stood beside our President while the republicans in congress were trashing him. We need more politicians like him!

    February 18, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  4. Once you vote Black

    Crist is a GOP man we can trust. He wants the stim money, he likes Obama, and he can stop Morning Joe in his tracks.

    February 18, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  5. Jothedemocrat

    That's what happen when you want to pal around rush limbaugh an shawn hannity to become popular. The base is not enough to win GOP morons. Rep. Connie Mack IV should learn how to be a moderate republican in a moderate state. That's Politic 101.
    Good for Crist. I hope he changes party affiliation and become independant or simply a democrat. I know it's too much to ask.

    February 18, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  6. Give me a break!

    Native Floridian here...NO CRIST...NOWHERE!!! He's ruined our state. The only way he's saving it is from the federal bailout! He's a tool!

    February 18, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  7. Mike

    I'm a dem put I stronly support Mr. Crist he does a get job, hope he stays as gov

    February 18, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  8. In Houston, TX

    You know what's funny to me. When repuglicans have a corruption issue, the repugs try to make it seem like what was done wasn't so bad, they blame the liberal media and they make sure to point out that we Dems ain't so clean ourselves
    When The Dems have a corruption issue, we go after the guy like we don't know him, we respond with venom and curse the one who has brought shame to our party. We don't come to their rescue, we come to their hanging like a lynch mob or an audience at a McCain rally for president or a lynch mob. Liberal constituents really hate corruption.
    The dems didn't want Burris and would not accept him untile we realized we had no legal alternative. Then we tried to get along because the law said so. Now that it appears that he lied, we want him gone. No cover up, no defense for those we think are guilty. (let someone else defend him) GET HIM OUT. He has brought shame to our party.
    Libs really REALLY HATE corruption. Burris may be completely innocent. WE DON'T CARE! If you look dirty we want you gone

    February 18, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  9. Debby

    Crist is okay I like Joe S. better for the Senate run.

    February 18, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  10. Debi

    If he runs for senate I hope he waits until after his second term as gov.
    His worthless lt. gov should not even attempt to run in his place. That guy has too many issues.

    2010 wil be a good year for Crist if he runs for gov. He is trying his best for Florida. I just wish he would abolish the FCAT.

    February 18, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  11. person

    i dont know what to make of him, except he's weird looking.

    February 18, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  12. Joan , Ontario

    Republican politicians should note that Crist supported President Obama's stimulua plan and has the support of the majority of his constituents. Those who opposed the president may wish they had broken rank with Boehner, McConnell, McCain, Shelby, Limbaugh, Hannity, Dobbs, etc. and thought more about the people in their states who need help.

    February 18, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  13. joe smith

    since the DC madam supposedly stepped off a chair in Florida, perhaps some of the up and comers know where the little black book is..I mean, something thats' worth more than the currant national debt just goes missing...

    February 18, 2009 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  14. Dylan from MN

    As far as Republicans go, Gov. Crist has definetly impressed me, he puts country before party which is rare for a Republican now-a-days.

    February 18, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  15. Rosa Birmingham, AL

    He is a good choice and is fairly moderate unlike most of the crazy REpublicans in the senate now.

    February 18, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  16. elsie

    He may be good and well liked, but if he becomes a Senator he will do what he is told by whoever it is that controls them. Zero votes on the Stimulus proves these guys are not independent. The tree that crossed over are not unique. They vote with the Dems often.

    PS. CNN please apply for some stimulus money targeted directly to your homepage. Especially the vidio portion. The stories and pictures rarely match.

    February 18, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  17. Obama America's President

    he seems honest.

    February 18, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  18. BobT

    Might as well make him a Senator, he sucks as a governor!

    February 18, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  19. BobT

    Another President wanna-be; I guess as a Senator he can really kiss some DC a$$ !

    February 18, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  20. Eleanor

    Actually Crist is one of the few republicans I like
    gl Gov Crist
    I thought his standing beside Pres Obama last week was respectful
    and admirable

    February 18, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  21. yuri

    One hopes that a sensible and sane GOP governor, Chris, once he becomes a senator, will be a proud bipartisan guy and will cachinnate at the other rigid GOP congressional zombies, when it comes to voting on an issue.

    February 18, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  22. Jackie in Dallas

    Actually, quite a few Republican Governors supported the Stimulus Bill, because they know with certainty that their constituents need it. I admire Crist's support despite the enormous pressure put on him by the RNP, though. He was thinking of his people first, not his party. Too bad more of the GOP can't get with the program.

    Will the Stimulus Bill magically fix everything? No, that's just plain silly. This crisis has been coming on for years, and both parties must share some of the blame in not addressing it before it came to this point. However, the signs were HORRIBLY visible for the last 5 years, and President Bush's war in Iraq conveniently took the eyes of the public and politicians off of it, so I do believe that the majority share goes to the GOP. Certainly the trillions of dollars that the Iraq war has cost us, not to mention the thousands of American lives and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives have done nothing to help.

    February 18, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  23. obama-mama

    I'm a democrat but I think Crist is great.

    February 18, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  24. felicha, florida

    I think that Charlie Crist is okay but I don't think that he's all that great with some of the votes he's decided on, however I would consider voting for him BUT THAT'S ONLY IF KENDRICK MEEKS DECIDES NOT TO RUN....

    HEY KENDRICK YOU ARE NEEDED, JUST RUN FOR IT YOUR TIME IS NOW YOU HAVE DONE WONDERS FOR THE BROWARD AND DADE COMMUNITIES DON'T THINK WE ARE NOT APPRECIATIVE OR DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'VE DONE....

    AMERICA IS CHANGING SO PLEASE MAKE A RUN FOR IT AND A BOLD ONE AT THAT...

    February 18, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  25. karen-Phoenix

    He NEEDS to stay as Govenor. Politics will kill him!!

    February 18, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
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