Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has double-digit leads over either of Florida’s favorite sons, former Governor Jeb Bush or Senator Marco Rubio, in an early look at the 2016 presidential election, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.
Clinton, who shows the most strength of any potential 2016 aspirant in Quinnipiac University’s national polls, leads Jeb Bush 51 – 40 percent and bests Sen. Rubio 52 – 41 percent in a poll of Sunshine State registered voters.
Clinton is viewed much more favorably than either man, 62 – 33 percent favorable for Clinton, compared to 50 – 35 percent favorable for Bush and 41 – 34 percent for Rubio.
“We probably won’t know for some time whether former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton runs for president in 2016, but if she decides to make the race, she begins with a sizable lead in a state that Republicans cannot win the White House without,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “Florida voters have a very positive view of Mrs. Clinton and it’s not just Democrats who feel that way.”
Clinton is viewed favorably by 26 percent of Republicans, not bad for a Democrat who’s had her share of battles with the GOP, and gets a 57 – 35 percent favorability among the key voting group, independents. Not surprisingly, she gets 93 – 5 percent favorability among Democrats. She has a 10-point gender gap: 66 percent of women and 56 percent of men view her favorably.
In a head-to-head with Jeb Bush, Mrs. Clinton would get 10 percent of Republicans while he would only get 4 percent of Democrats. Independent voters are divided 42 percent for Clinton and 41 percent for Bush.
President Obama remains slightly above water in Florida, with a 50 – 45 percent job approval rating.