2024 watch: Marco Rubio, Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis poll in Top 10 for GOP presidential picks

scott rubio
Rubio performs the best with 15%, good enough for fifth.

Three Florida politicians rank among Republicans’ top picks to succeed President Donald Trump as the next Republican president in 2024, according to an early poll.

Sen. Marco Rubio led the Florida contingent at 15%, good enough for fifth in the Axios/SurveyMonkey poll released Saturday. The state’s recent governors, Sen. Rick Scott and Gov. Ron DeSantis ranked eighth and ninth, respectively, at 8%.

But even Rubio clearly falls in the second tier of candidates in an environment where the Trump brand runs strong. Vice President Mike Pence, at 40%; Donald Trump Jr., at 29%; and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, at 26%; polled in the top three. And just ahead of Rubio landed Ivanka Trump at 16%.

Team Florida has maintained high national profiles in recent years between elections, natural disasters and foreign policy. Rubio was an early favorite in the 2016 Republican primary but pulled out after losing Florida to the elder Trump.

And Scott and DeSantis’ close 2018 victories drew coast-to-coast attention in a national environment where Republicans lost the generic congressional ballot by 8.4 percentage points. Scott unseated Sen. Bill Nelson 50.1% to 49.9% while DeSantis beat out former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum 49.6% to 49.2%.

Pence beat his prospective rivals among all age groups, except among 18- to 29-year-olds. With that youngest voting bloc, Don Jr. beat the Vice President with 34% to his 27%.

And the prospective female candidates performed better among men than they did among women. Haley polled 30% among men and 22% among women, while Ivanka Trump polled 17% among men and 15% among women.

However, no candidate performed better among women than they did among men. The 15% of women who chose not to answer, compared to the 8% of men, could be a contributing factor.

The Democratic race, assuming no Democrats wins in November, showed a more split lead with several familiar faces from 2020. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Sen. Kamala Harris and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker polled at 30%, 26% and 24%, respectively.

No Florida Democrats appeared on the 2024 poll, but Stacey Abrams, the 2018 Democratic gubernatorial nominee in Georgia, polled at 18%. One might expect Gillum, another African American Democrat to narrowly lose a statewide race in the South, to poll similarly.

The GOP Axios/SurveyMonkey poll, released Saturday, surveyed 1,854 Republicans and independents who lean Republican from Dec. 14 to Dec. 17. The Democratic race poll surveyed 1,769 Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents over the same period.

Both polls’ margins of error were 2.5 percentage points.

Renzo Downey

Renzo Downey covers state government for Florida Politics. After graduating from Northwestern University in 2019, Renzo began his reporting career in the Lone Star State, covering state government for the Austin American-Statesman. Shoot Renzo an email at r[email protected] and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.


  • Mary Pezzi

    January 5, 2020 at 3:30 pm

    Rick Scott is a self-financing CROOK, who used ill gotten wealth to buy the Florida Governorship — and also US Senate position. I’m glad he’s FINALLY out as Governor, but really sorry to see him in Washington. There is no way in HELL that I would want him as POTUS.

    • Patricia Weidl

      January 5, 2020 at 6:43 pm

      No way Jose!

  • Mary Pezzi

    January 5, 2020 at 3:39 pm

    Scott is a climate denier, who had the words “climate change” removed from Florida government websites. We had catastrophic environmental problems during his terms. When Ron DeSantis became Florida Governor, he fired all of the South Florida Water commissioners and he put a SCIENTIST in charge of the state’s environmental agency. Many Democrats voted for DeSantis because he promised to clean up the mess that Scott allowed, due to his lifelong “friendship” with the sugar industry. I would vote for DeSantis as Governor or to replace Scott in the US Senate. I would still prefer a Progressive Democrat running the country. But if the corporate-wing of the Democratic Party puts up a sold-out politician that favors free-trade vs fair-trade, I will be shopping for a better candidate… because I refuse to vote for any more Corporate Democrats. I want my party back! If a candidate that is Clinton 2.1 wins in 2024, then I would be voting for the Green Party, the Working Family Party, or a moderate Republican (IF he is still pro-choice and is not a climate-denier.)

  • Patricia Weidl

    January 5, 2020 at 6:42 pm

    The world has gone crazy if this group is considered the best offerings.

  • Andrew Nappi

    January 5, 2020 at 7:07 pm

    “Vice President Mike Pence, at 40%; Donald Trump Jr., at 29%; and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, at 26%; polled in the top three. And just ahead of Rubio landed Ivanka Trump at 16%.”
    The republican party of which I was a member of for several decades has imploded upon the altar of cult worship. So far gone were they by 2016 they allowed themselves to be taken over by a fast talking huckster NYC liberal who saw an opening as a populist. Had the democratic party offered a similar opening he would have gone that way. And now they support his liberal spawn for POTUS? What a joke they have become. There is nothing to be gained by supporting either the Blue or the Red Crime Families. It’s the lightweights against the dimwits. So sad to see “conservatives” now members of the same cult of personality worship they accused the obamaites of for eight years. A Truly leaderless herd open to any stimulus. There isn’t a worthy choice in this entire article.

  • Sir Farty Fartsalot

    January 5, 2020 at 9:23 pm

    LOL, those 3 clowns?

Comments are closed.


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