Tampa Media Poll: Sink Leads Florida

Friday, 14 Feb 2014 12:41 PM

By Lisa Barron

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Image: Tampa Media Poll: Sink Leads Florida
Alex Sink, left, and David Jolly
Two new polls show Democrat Alex Sink leading in the race to replace Rep. C.W. "Bill" Young in Florida's 13th Congressional District.

A poll out Thursday from the Tampa Bay Times/Bay News 9/WUSF Public Media found Sink with a 7-point lead over Republican David Jolly one month before the March 11 special election. Sink took 42 percent, compared with 35 percent for Jolly and 4 percent for Libertarian Lucas Overby.

The poll also showed the extent to which Obamacare is playing a role in the election. Of those who support Sink, 81 percent also support Obamacare. Of those who support Jolly, 84 percent also oppose Obamacare.

Outside groups have spent millions of dollars on attack ads against both Sink and Jolly, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

The telephone survey of 603 registered voters in Congressional District 13 — all likely to vote in the special election — was conducted Feb. 4-9 and had a margin of error of 4 percent.

Another survey from the new polling institute at Saint Leo University gives Sink an even bigger 9-point lead.

That poll of 400 respondents was conducted Feb. 9-11, using a blended sample reached by interactive voice response and an online panel and had a margin of error of 5 percent.

"Ms. Sink's advantage is being driven by solid favorability ratings coupled with issue positions that seem to be more closely aligned with voter preferences than are Jolly's," said Frank Orlando, a political science instructor at Saint Leo University.

"She overcomes a partisan ID disadvantage in the district by maintaining much higher favorability among Republicans and Independents than Mr. Jolly does among Democrats.... The fact that a Libertarian candidate has robust support levels in the double digits seems to be contributing to the size of Sink's lead," he added.

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