Poll: DeSantis has Early Lead in GOP Primary for Governor

Surveys | January 2, 2018

(Gage Skidmore | Flickr)

RESULTS HERE > Full Survey

KANSAS CITY, MO – Remington Research Group has completed a public and independent survey of likely Republican primary voters in Florida. The survey was conducted December 30 through December 31, 2017. 1,423 likely Republican primary voters participated in the survey and the margin of error is +/-2.6%. The survey was paid for and commissioned independent of any campaign or committee.

The data show that President Donald Trump is very popular amongst Republican primary voters with 84% viewing the President favorably and just 12% viewing him unfavorably. Additionally, a plurality of voters, 36%, claimed to be a “Trump Republican” when asked what type of Republican they considered themselves to be. This data could provide a glimpse as to how impactful an endorsement from Trump could be in the primary election.

The two top Republican contenders for Governor are viewed similarly by primary voters statewide, with Putnam holding a slightly larger name identification level. Putnam is viewed favorably by 37% of those surveyed, with 6% viewing him unfavorably. 57% had no opinion of Putnam.

Ron DeSantis is viewed favorably by 32% with 7% viewing him unfavorably and 61% having no opinion.

A third candidate, Richard Corcoran, is largely unknown by primary voters with 8% viewing Corcoran favorably, 13% viewing him unfavorably and 79% having no opinion.

Currently, DeSantis holds a three-point lead over Putnam in a three way ballot which includes Corcoran. DeSantis leads with 28%, Putnam places second with 25% and Corcoran registers 3%. 44% of those surveyed are undecided.

Full ballot results below:

Q: Possible candidates in the 2018 Republican Primary Election for Governor of Florida are Ron DeSantis, Adam Putnam and Richard Corcoran. If the election were held today, for whom would you vote?

Ron DeSantis: 28%
Adam Putnam: 25%
Richard Corcoran: 3%
Undecided: 44%

The survey also tests DeSantis versus Putnam in a heads-up race. The heads-up ballot shows an even closer race with DeSantis leading Putnam by one point. DeSantis leads with 30% compared to Putnam with 29%. 41% of voters are undecided in the one on one matchup.

Full ballot results below:

Q: If the candidates in the 2018 Republican Primary Election for Governor of Florida were just Ron DeSantis and Adam Putnam, and the election were held today, for whom would you vote?

Ron DeSantis: 30%
Adam Putnam: 29%
Undecided: 41%

DeSantis holds an advantage in the Orlando media market, where he leads 40% to 23% and Putnam possesses an advantage in the Tampa media market where he leads 52% to 19%.

DeSantis leads by four points amongst self-identified conservative voters, 33% to 29%.

Amongst those who viewed both DeSantis and Putnam favorably, DeSantis leads Putnam (amongst those specific voters) by eight points, 47% to 39%.

The endorsement of Ron DeSantis by Donald Trump is significant. Respondents were asked if they would be more likely to support or more likely to oppose Ron DeSantis after they had heard he has been endorsed by Trump. 69% indicated they would be more likely to support DeSantis compared to 15% who said they would be more likely to oppose.

Q: President Donald Trump has endorsed Ron DeSantis for Governor of Florida. Knowing this, would you be more likely to support or more likely to oppose Ron DeSantis?

More likely to support: 69%
More likely to oppose: 15%
No difference: 16%

“This is a very early survey but there are some very encouraging takeaways for Ron DeSantis,” said Titus Bond, President of Remington Research Group. “This race is very close with a slight edge for DeSantis, the Trump endorsement could end up becoming a deciding factor here.”

Remington Research Group is a polling firm that specializes in automated IVR technology. The firm was founded in an effort to provide more reliable and affordable polling for campaigns throughout the country. Remington Research Group surveys have been featured in RealClearPolitics, Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, the Wall Street Journal and numerous local media throughout the United States.