Poll: The Rubio & Clinton factor in Florida
November 1st, 2011
06:00 PM ET
2 years ago

Poll: The Rubio & Clinton factor in Florida

(CNN) – Mitt Romney and Herman Cain are tied at the top in the battle for Florida's Republican primary, according to a new poll. And a Suffolk University survey of Sunshine State voters also indicates that adding Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida to the GOP ticket would change the political landscape in the key battleground state.

According to the poll, 25% of registered Republicans in Florida say they support Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who's making his second bid for the White House, with 24% backing Cain, the businessman, former Godfather's Pizza CEO and radio talk show host. Romney's one point margin is well within the survey's sampling error.

The poll indicates former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at 11%, Texas Gov. Rick Perry at 9%, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas at 5%, former Utah Gov. and ambassador to China Jon Huntsman at 2%, with Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson each at 1%.

The poll was conducted almost entirely before reports emerged of sexual harassment allegations against Cain.

A CNN/Time/ORC International Poll released last week indicated that three out of ten Republicans said they would back Romney, with Cain at 18%. Gingrich and Perry each at 9% support, with Paul at 6% and everyone else in the low single digits.

Florida is becoming a player in the battle for the GOP presidential nomination and will hold its primary on January 31, voting fourth in the primary and caucus calendar. Florida has a closed primary, allowing only registered Republicans to participate.

In hypothetical 2012 general election matchups, the poll indicates that President Barack Obama is deadlocked with Romney at 42%, with Obama holding a three point margin over Cain, 42 to 39%, which is within the sampling error. The president holds a 46 to 34% advantage over Perry and a 44 to 32% lead over Paul, and a 45 to 38% margin over Gingrich.

The poll also asks about Rubio, the Republican freshman senator from Florida. If Rubio was the GOP vice presidential nominee, the poll indicates the Republican ticket holds a 46 to 41% margin in the Sunshine state.

"Marco Rubio secures Florida which, along with Ohio, is one of the two most important swing states to win, said David Paleologos, director of the Political Research Center at Boston's Suffolk University. "He also adds potential strength in states like New Mexico, Texas, California, Arizona, and Nevada, which have high Hispanic populations."

Rubio has repeatedly said he has no interest in serving on the GOP ticket.

While the poll indicates that Obama struggles in Florida the low 40 percent range on job performance and possible 2012 head-to-head matchups with Romney and Cain, he rises to 50 percent in a hypothetical match up when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is added to the Democratic ticket, as the running mate.

"Clinton has become the quantifiable lifeboat that could save a sinking Democratic ticket in 2012," adds Paleologos.

But Clinton has repeatedly shot down any suggestions that she would join the ticket next year and the White House has shot down any suggestions that Vice President Joe Biden would be replaced on the ticket.

The Suffolk University poll was conducted October 26-30, with 800 Florida registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

Also see:

Romney to give policy address Friday

Pro-Perry group blankets Iowa and South Carolina with new ads

Activists propose 'shutting down' candidate offices during Iowa caucuses

Perry: 'I'm a doer, not a talker'


Filed under: 2012 • Florida • Herman Cain • Hillary Clinton • Marco Rubio • Mitt Romney
soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. Florida Joe

    Cain and Rubio what a ticket......2 liars for the price of one.........Rubio is not a citizen and he knows it willl come out if he gets anywhere near the Repub ticket........

    November 2, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  2. Bob

    Clinton saw what happen to her in 2008 with the media. It was too stressing for her and I don't think she wants to go through that again.

    November 2, 2011 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  3. PJ

    It would be a shame if Florida went with Romney. At least Cain is a straight shooter who says it as it is. Romney says it the way you want to hear it if it gets him elected.

    November 2, 2011 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  4. Wes in Boston

    Hillary is the only person that can get our Country back on track. Obama needs to step aside and allow her to run for President. If he doesn't, he will lose and we will see our country go to the lowest it's ever been with any of the GOP'ers running now.

    November 2, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  5. YES

    Obama-Clinton 2012... Clinton-Obama even better!!

    November 2, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Rubio is not fit to polish the heels on Hillary's shoes.
    Screw your poll, they are contrived, and quite worthless as evidenced by those that have Cain garnering the GOP nomination to run for president.
    Yeah right.

    November 2, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  7. A True Centrist

    Actually, he has only told one version of the story. The Washington Post has basically declared he could not prove his parents were exiled from Cuba, while most normal people would say the Washinton Post can't prove they were not.

    This is as silly as the birthers on the Republican side and a perfect example of everyone putting party and politics before logic. The same people who were on this board complaining about the birthers are now jumping on board and doing the same thing to Rubio. Again, as a moderate, I get more and more disgusted by both parties each day.

    November 2, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  8. Keeping it Real

    Anonymous, "Rubio is a proven LIAR. End of story."

    And so are Clinton and Obama. Your point? The fact is that Clinton has done everything to distance herself from Obama, and smartly so.

    November 2, 2011 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  9. TheFatherofLies

    Rubio's star has been falling in recent months... He would have had far more sway if the election were held two years ago.

    November 2, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  10. texan

    That`s 49%--- so 51% prefer one of the other candidates. Those 51% really don`t like either, therefore, the GOP is fractured in Fl.

    November 2, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  11. gt

    rubio -huntsman......the best hope for america

    November 2, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  12. texan

    Robert, you`re being "herded" back into the group. Remember, it was the REPUBLICANS that got us here. And the REPUBLICANS that have NOT put any plan out there for the economy, except cut taxes and reduce spending. -- Just look at what led up to the Great Depression and Republican "fixes" that worsened conditions. - Did anyone study history/ economics ??????

    November 2, 2011 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  13. v_mag

    Contrary to popular opinion, we have far too many business men in government. Business has different goals than government, and it's a bad place to draw politicians from. Business strives to crush opposition and maximize profits. We see examples of the results of hiring too many business men in Congress, where each side struggles to destroy their opponents and gather more pork for their pet projects instead of cooperating, compromising, and governing.

    Trying to sell me Romney or Cain for president because of their business experience is not ever going to work. That just assures me that they will be rapacious, bull-headed, and care nothing for the people who depend on them. They will, however, worship money and give themselves over to greed. It's in their business man genes.

    We need people in government with experience in something other than business. Something that brings people together for the common good, which should be the goal of government. How about someone who's run a thrift store or food bank? How about someone with city planning or zoning experience? Not a pizza man or corporate hatchet man, though.

    November 2, 2011 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  14. proudmemberofglobalzero

    Florida voter here. Yes, I vote in every election...too bad our youth doesn't. There is an election somewhere in this country every Tuesday. Wake up Florida or we will get stuck with another corporate felon in the White House like we have in our Governors Mansion. I am already working to keep the White House with the best President of my lifetime, and keep Bill Nelson in the Senate and my Rep Ted Deutch in the House.

    November 2, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  15. FIELD1stSGT

    This is ridiculous. We have been fed so many lies from the Liberals and no solid running canidate from the Gop that Americans are beginning to think of an independent running canidate could take it all. Hillary Clinton needs to think about that for on an independent ticket and cleaning up her act such as the 2nd admendment gun rights and the governments health plans she would sweep all other canidates. Come on out Hillary the nation needs you. HILLARY 2012

    November 2, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  16. Jeb

    Cain is toast.

    Next!

    November 2, 2011 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  17. Al-NY,NY

    Maybe Florida. The rest, nope. He's too shady with his stories

    November 2, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  18. Lynda/Minnesota

    "And so are Clinton and Obama. Your point? The fact is that Clinton has done everything to distance herself from Obama, and smartly so."

    You must have missed her last appearance on Meet the Press. That's OK. You can always google it and see for yourself just how "distanced" she is from praising Obama.

    November 2, 2011 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  19. logic in LA

    Hilary continues to prove why she was our best choice in 2008 and she would be for 2012- even as VP.

    November 2, 2011 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  20. NVa Native

    Every GOPer with a brain knows Obama will win a second term and that's why only the losers are running.
    What they don't know is 2016 is when Hilary will win, and again in 2020. So we will get the time we need to flush out all the crap GOP control left behind.

    November 2, 2011 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  21. vic , nashville ,tn

    Hillary Clinton ticket will win we agree because media invaded her campaign thoroughly in 2008
    Marco Rubio we don’t know much about him he may turn like Herman Cain or Rick Perry

    November 2, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  22. Democrat Party - leftist "progressive" socialist communist losers hellbent on destroying the USA

    Every GOPer with a brain knows Obama will win a second term and that's why only the losers are running.
    What they don't know is 2016 is when Hilary will win, and again in 2020. So we will get the time we need to flush out all the crap GOP control left behind.
    ===========================================================================================
    Egads, ease up on the kool-aide will ya! Everybody can read poll numbers that say Obama loses in a head to head match up with Daffy Duck. The American people have heard enough of his lies, attacks, excuses, finger pointing, etc. The guy is a loser and will be sent packing next year. It will be a VERY humiliating defeat for him and many Democrats. (those dumb enough to run for re-election that is)

    November 2, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  23. Sniffit

    Yeah, but what does Rubio do to the GOP ticket in other states haha. Hint: [Insert wrong answer gameshow buzzer sound]

    November 2, 2011 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  24. Dave Harris

    Considering that the mostly elderly voters of Florida elected a Republican governor who stole $500 million from Medicare (still a record) and got away with it, there's no telling what wacky thing they may do next year. Since most of them are also racists, it's hard to imagine them supporting a black man, but then they may have failed to notice that he's black (yes, they're that dumb). As for Rubio, Republicans managed to pitch him as a "tea partier", even though he's one of the crookedest insiders in state politics, and the old fools bought it. Yes, a Republican can go far in Florida!

    November 2, 2011 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  25. sammieb51

    If Rubio would perpetuate a lie about his ROOTS, what else is the guy lying about? If the GOP can't figure this one out, or figure out Cain, this country is DONE. At some point, they have to start connecting the dots on these lies (or "mis-speaks" as the candidates call them) - I mean really, if they know someone personally who conducts themselves like this, normal folks tend to say, OK, that person is BS, I'm not going to associate with them. In other words, don't vote for them. They are showing you who they are, listen, pay attention.

    November 2, 2011 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
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