A new poll shows Gov. Ron DeSantis with a double-digit lead over the most likely challengers to his reelection.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce released a Cherry Communications poll Monday asking about head-to-head matchups between DeSantis and three potential Democratic nominees.
U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, a St. Petersburg Democrat, posts the best showing against DeSantis. But the Republican incumbent still leads Crist 51% to 41%, including holding a 50% to 33% edge among independent voters.
The poll found 87% of Republicans standing by DeSantis compared to 76% of Democrats preferring Crist. A former Republican Governor, Crist wins just 1% of the Republican vote.
Crist is the only major Democratic candidate to announce he’s running for Governor this cycle. Pollsters tested matchups against two other likely candidates, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and U.S. Rep. Val Demings, an Orlando Democrat.
DeSantis leads Fried 51% to 39% but notably holds a slimmer lead among independents, 48% to 32%. But DeSantis wins 89% of Republicans to Fried’s 74% Democratic support.
The Governor fares best against Demings, leading her 53% to 38%, a 15-percentage-point margin. Against Demings, DeSantis wins 92% of the Republican vote while she gets 76% of Democratic support. The incumbent holds a 20-percentage-point lead among independent voters.
Against all three potential opponents, DeSantis’ lead is outside the poll’s 4% margin of error. The poll includes responses from 602 voters, reached between April 30 and May 8, a period that spans before and after Crist announced his candidacy.
Unlike a Victory Insights poll released last week, the Chamber survey doesn’t include a potential Democratic Party primary matchup pitting Crist, Fried and Demings against one another. But between 74% and 76% of Democrats in the Chamber Poll will back the nominee out of these three choices. The Democratic primary remains more than a year away.
The best news for DeSantis may be that he polls above 50% against any of the three Democrats.