Turncoat ex-governor Charlie Crist has a huge lead over current Florida GOP Gov. Rick Scott, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.
Crist, a Republican-turned independent who is now a Democrat, is seen as likely to challenge Scott in next year’s gubernatorial election.
A hefty 50 percent of voters see Crist’s party switch as a positive thing as it shows he is a pragmatist, the poll discovered. Just 40 percent say it’s a negative showing he lacks core beliefs.
Crist was elected governor of the Sunshine State in 2006 but served just four years. deciding to try for the U.S. Senate in 2010 instead of running for a second term. After trailing Marco Rubio during the primaries he decided to run as an independent where he lost heavily to Rubio. He officially joined the Democrats in December last year after speaking at their National Convention in September.
Only 32 percent of voters say Scott deserves a second term in office, including just 28 percent of independent voters. His job approval rating is a negative, with 36 percent approving and 49 percent disapproving.
In other poll findings, Scott leads State Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam 47 to 24 percent in a potential GOP primary match-up. But Alex Sink, the Democrat who lost to Scott in a close 2010 race, bests him 45 to 34 percent now.
“There isn’t much good news in these numbers for Gov. Rick Scott, but there is some,” Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement.
“Scott’s support among Republicans appears pretty solid, although he has a lot of fences to mend with independent voters and he has virtually no crossover appeal to Democrats.”
The poll of 1,000 registered voters was conducted from Wednesday of last week through this Monday.
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