A year after Florida flipped from blue to red and helped Republican Donald Trump to his stunning presidential victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton, President Trump has a 41 percent approval rating in a new Florida Atlantic University poll of Sunshine State voters.
Trump’s disapproval rating is 47 percent in the survey, which also finds voters hold generally positive views of Republican Gov. Rick Scott and Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson.
While Trump’s approval is under water by 6 points in Florida, that’s considerably better than his nationwide numbers. The RealClearPolitics.com average of national polls at noon Wednesday showed a net negative rating of 18.8 points for the president, with 38.2 approving and 57 percent disapproving.
Trump won Florida and its 29 electoral votes in November 2016 with 49 percent of the vote to Clinton’s 47.8 percent.
Trump’s latest approval numbers are slightly better than the FAU poll found in August, when 37 percent of voters approved and 47 percent disapproved.
FAU’s online poll of 500 voters, conducted Nov. 2-5 using a combination of phone calls and online questionnaires, has a 4.5 percent margin of error.
The poll’s sample has a slightly more Republican tilt than Florida’s electorate. Survey respondents were 33.3 percent Republican, 32.3 percent Democrat and 34.3 percent independent. Actual Florida voter registrations on Sept. 30 were 37.5 percent Democrat, 35.4 percent Republican, with 27.1 percent having no party affiliation or belonging to minor parties.
The survey measured voter views of Scott and Nelson but didn’t test a hypothetical 2018 Senate race between the two. Scott, facing term limits as governor next year, is expected to challenge Nelson.
Scott is viewed favorably by 49 percent of Florida voters and unfavorably by 39 percent. Scott’s handling of Hurricane Irma was rated good to excellent by 72 percent of voters, with 57 percent saying it will help him if he runs for Senate.
Three-term incumbent Nelson is viewed favorably by 45 percent and unfavorably by 22 percent.