The Saint Leo University Polling Institute's most recent U.S. and Florida survey findings are appearing in multiple news outlets and broadcasts, and the institute director, Frank Orlando, will appear live during an evening broadcast from radio station 970 WFLA-AM in Tampa on August 28, the night of the Florida primary.
Orlando, who also teaches political science at the university, will be helping monitor the Republican and Democratic gubernatorial primary races. The institute polled earlier in the month on Floridian's preferences in the races, which have been crowded on both sides. The Republican and Democratic primary winners will face each other in the November 6, 2018, election to see who will become the state's next governor.
Among Republicans, the state Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam is facing a primary challenge from U.S. Representative Ron DeSantis. On the Democratic side, former U.S. Representative Gwen Graham has opponents including Philip Levine, former mayor of Miami Beach; real estate magnate Jeff Greene; and Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum.
Orlando might be called upon to discuss the institute's latest job-approval ratings for President Donald J. Trump, which were collected from August 10 through August 16. President Trump personally endorsed Republican candidate DeSantis, for instance, and that naturally leads people to wonder if GOP primary voters who like President Trump will follow his advice as they cast ballots.
The recent survey found that among 500 Floridians asked (from all political parties) earlier this month, 50.4 percent say they either strongly approve or somewhat approve of the job the president is doing. That is up a bit from May when the Florida survey showed 45.8 percent of those answering like the president's work. These results have a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points. The August Florida rating is also better than the president is doing nationally, which is 47.8 percent in the August poll, and was 46.1 percent in May. The national results were drawn from a sample of 1,000 people and so the margin of error is lower, plus or minus 3 percentage points.
The recent poll also shows that 68 percent of those polled in Florida say they are staying informed and active on behalf of their preferred political party and candidates in 2018. A similar level responded that way nationally, too.
Other topics were covered in the August poll, too, and results are being posted for the next week or so. Topics include: opinions on gun control, views of Pope Francis and the current abuse crisis and the Catholic Church; attitudes on gun control; views on policing and law enforcement; and the current nominee for the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court.