Obama, Palin get bad news in Florida poll
April 11th, 2011
09:15 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama, Palin get bad news in Florida poll

Washington (CNN) – Dogged by a 34 percent approval rating among independents in Florida, a new poll out Monday indicates President Barack Obama would have a tough time beating either Republicans Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee in that crucial campaign state.

According to the new survey from Sachs/Mason Dixon, Obama trails both past and potential presidential 2012 candidates in head-to-head matchups in the Sunshine State, losing to Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, by a 48-43 percent margin and lagging behind Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor, by a 49-44 percent spread.

Among all voters, Obama's approval rating in the Sunshine State stands at 43 percent, with 56 percent saying they are unhappy with his performance as commander-in-chief. That's consistent with a Quinnipiac University survey released last week that placed Obama's approval rating at 44 percent in the Sunshine state. The Quinnipiac survey also indicates that just over half of Florida voters don't think the president deserves re-election.

The new Florida poll may save its worst findings for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who loses to the president by a sizable 51-39 margin. That's a worse showing than business mogul Donald Trump, who lags 8 points behind Obama with a 48-40 percent spread.

In even worse news for Palin, the onetime GOP vice presidential nominee places sixth with only 5 percent of support among registered Republicans when it comes to the horserace for the GOP primary in Florida, behind Romney at 23 percent, Huckabee at 18 percent, Trump at 13 percent, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at 11 percent, and former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty at 8 percent.

The poll surveyed 800 registered Florida voters from April 4-7 and carries a sampling error of 3.5 percentage points. For the Republican primary breakdown, the poll surveyed 400 Republicans and carries a sampling error of 5 percentage points.

The survey comes as the Florida Republican Party is currently in a heated debate with other state parties over when it will hold its presidential primary. The state, per an official calendar adopted by the national party, had been slated to hold its nominating contest in March, behind the traditional first four – Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada.

But Florida Republicans bucked that request earlier this year when it leapfrogged those states, saying they will conduct their primary on January 31, 2012, in direct violation of the calendar ratified last year by the Democratic and Republican National Committees, which carved out February for the official start of the nomination fight.

But amid heavy criticism from national Republicans and those of other primary states, Republican Party of Florida chairman Dave Bitner indicated last month he is open to moving the state's primary date back behind the traditional four.

Florida has famously see-sawed between the Democrats and Republicans in recent presidential elections: Obama carried the state by 3 percentage points in 2008 while former President George W. Bush won there by 5 points in 2004. And of course, Bush barely won the state in 2000 after a drawn-out recount.

- CNN's Peter Hamby contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Polls • President Obama
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Dean

    Actually, it's not worse news for Palin...she's not an elected official and sh's not running for any office.

    It's worse news for our worthless president...and great news for the GOP. Florida's electoral votes will be cast for the GOP candidate in 2012.

    April 11, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  2. the real ib

    I wouldn't vote for either one of them. Palin wouldn't finish her term in Alaska because she saw $ signs and couldn't wait to get them. Obama is such a failure as president why would you want to vote for him and no it's not Bush's fault unless you are a liberal and trying to cover for Obama. Oil prices are out of sight; gas prices have more than doubled since Obama was elected and yet he gets a free pass on that. Get ready people; economy is going to tank again and tank big time. Energy prices caused it the first time and will do it again. Plus Obama and company doesn't realize that inflation is getting out of controll again; don't think so just look at food prices and everything else you buy right now.

    April 11, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  3. Former Republican, but never again!

    Even the Republicans now realize that Palin is a complete idiot!

    April 11, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  4. Ernie

    What I have noticed that Obama's rating never fall below 44 or 45 percent. No matter what he says or does. I believe that the liberal press is keepping is rating aboue 40 percent, but everyone knows that his approval rating are below 40 percent.
    Obama's unapproval rating is at 56 percent by his approval rating is at 43 percent, there something wrong with the figures here. Where are the other 1 percent?. No matter what state Obama approval rating is below 50 percent but it nevers goes below 45 percent. If his apporval rating is this bad in every state then by all figures Obama is a "One and Done" President.

    The liberal press will never give the true figures on how low Obama's approval ratings are, If his approval rating are at 44 percent then substract another 10 points and that will give his true approval rating. Like I have written before "believe 50% of what you read and 50% of what you hear. As long as the liberal press has your attention the will be able to sway your thought. So my advice is not to listen to the "liberal press" and make your own judgement. The "liberal press is the President best briend, you will never hear the "liberal press" say one bad thing about a democratic President.

    April 11, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  5. Disgusted in PA

    Seriously, a poll of 400 REPUBLICAN voters, and we are surprised that of 400 republican voters President Obama does not do well with them. But honestly CNN, your headlines are soooooo misleading. Stop trying to make something out of nothing..because this story (and the poll for that matter) are not worth mentioning in the same paragraph with the President.

    April 11, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  6. Rib15

    These kinds of numbers make me want to reconsider Florida's secession. Donald Trump is a serious contender?

    April 11, 2011 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  7. gt

    no surprise here.... both of these two are to far one way or the other for most americans... we cant be govern from the fringe... obama has shown his true colors.. not the change american voters wanted....we want jobs and out of 2 wars...

    April 11, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  8. Rickster

    "The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 19% of the nation's voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president."
    Heckuva job, Barry!

    April 11, 2011 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  9. Bob bobberson

    Palin isnt running, why do they keep reporting her numbers? She must still get a lot of clicks!

    April 11, 2011 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  10. kww

    A FLORIDA poll ?! Oh, puh-leeze...

    April 11, 2011 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  11. FM

    On this Poll we are not informed how many people from each side (GOP & Dems, Indep.) were polled, thus not easy to understand the reality!

    April 11, 2011 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  12. Russ

    The amazing thing is how many people, especially retirees and low income people support Republicans. Do they not see the trending here? Vote Republican so we can cut all benefits to lower income people and help their buddies in corporations get richer. What kind of spell do they have over these people? I guess since most of them are hard core bible thumpers, and obviously uneducated, the Repubes have convinced them it's God's will.

    April 11, 2011 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  13. ja

    strange, the polls never poll people i know, where do the people come from mars or venus

    April 11, 2011 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  14. usualoner

    The people in FL should read the news better, especially what the Republicans propose to do with benefits such as the new health care and Medicare.

    April 11, 2011 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
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