[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/04/art.crist.gi.jpg caption="If Gov. Crist does decide to give up his current job and run for the Senate, the survey indicates he's far ahead of any other possible Republican primary contender."](CNN) - Floridians message to their governor appears to be "we love you just the way you are," according to a new poll of Sunshine State voters.
Forty-two percent of people questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released Thursday they they'd prefer that Florida Gov. Charlie Crist seek re-election next year rather than run for the U.S. Senate. That's 16 points higher than the 26 percent who would like Crist to forgo a re-election bid and run for the Senate seat opening up by the retirement of incumbent senator and fellow Republican Mel Martinez. That sentiment is consistent among Republicans, Democrats, and Independents.
Sixty four percent of Florida voters questioned in the poll have a favorable opinion of Crist and 53 percent approve of the way the governor is handling the economy.
If Crist does decide to give up his current job and run for the Senate, the survey indicates he's far ahead of any other possible Republican primary contender.
A Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday suggests that 58 percent of voters believe the governor should be re-elected if he chooses to run for a second term.
"Given the Governor's popularity, he is likely to be a strong candidate for whichever office he seeks," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnpiac Univeristy Polling Insitute. "The other potential candidates for the Senate are not nearly as well-known or as well-liked as is Crist."
The Quinnipiac University survey was conducted April 6-13, with 1,332 Florida voters questioned by telephone. The poll's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.7 percentage points.