Charlie Crist shrugs off weak numbers in poll versus Ron DeSantis

Crist_Desantis side_by_side (9)
'It's a long way to the election.'

A leading Democratic candidate for Governor attempted Thursday to take air out of polling that showed him down more than 20 points to incumbent Gov. Ron DeSantis.

New polling from the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab showed DeSantis with a 21-point lead over Crist, 55% to 34%.

Even Democratic respondents seemed to like DeSantis. One in four Democrats polled chose him over Crist, a former Republican seeking a return to the Governor’s Mansion under his current party label.

Responding to questions from Action News Jax’s Jake Stofan, Crist said he hadn’t seen the poll before he shot it down.

“I can tell you that the polling that we have seen, starting with the Primary, has us with a very strong lead at this point in time,” Crist said. “As it relates to us vis-a-vis Gov. DeSantis, pretty much a dead heat in most polls I have seen. Some have us up, some have us down. But you know it’s a long way to the election. And a poll today is not as valuable as the poll on Nov. 8.”

The Real Clear Politics average of polls has DeSantis up nearly 9 points, which doesn’t suggest a dead heat at this point. However, Crist still came out of the UNF poll better positioned than Primary rivals.

Even with just 34% support, Crist was two points ahead of Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried in polling against DeSantis, who had 55% support against Fried head-to-head.

That crossover support came along with strong pull with non-party affiliated voters for DeSantis. Against either Fried or Crist, DeSantis was the choice of 54% of independents.

DeSantis was above 50% against both candidates with both men and women. While he was not over 50% among all age groups, DeSantis nonetheless led both Fried and Crist among all of them.

The UNF poll also surveyed the Democratic Primary, finding somewhat muddled results.

Crist was atop the field, with 27% support. Fried was second at 19%. Meanwhile, state Sen. Annette Taddeo was the choice of just 4% of those surveyed, putting her in a tie with David Nelson Freeman.

A full 38% of respondents didn’t know which candidate they preferred.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Frankie M.

    February 24, 2022 at 1:03 pm

    As the former governor Lawton Childs told Jeb Bush in their last debate “[T}he old he-coon walks just before the light of day.” Remember when Trump beat Biden in the last election? Yeah me either but there are plenty of people that will swear he did. Just ask them. They’ll tell you.

    • Ron Ogden

      February 24, 2022 at 3:11 pm

      “He-coon”: how can FLAPOL allow this kind of racial slur?

  • Tom

    February 24, 2022 at 11:01 pm

    Yes Ron.
    Despicable scum of the earth, Frankie M.
    Sounds like Alex as a alias. Regardless, just shameful. Amazing how a bad election night can bring out the racist with some sickos.
    Govs getting 24% of Dems. 58% approval.

    Especially when Dems crossed over and stayed home. You are an embarrassment. Hope you got the sand out of your crotch playing in mommy’s sandbox. LMAO what a joke.

  • MK

    March 3, 2022 at 7:32 am

    Something doesn’t sound right about this polll. What Democrat in their right mind would vote for a homophobic, racist, anti science, far right authoritarian Desantis over Christ. I wonder how that poll was worded.

    • Marissa Lopez

      March 3, 2022 at 2:26 pm

      He is so authoritarian…he wont even force me to do things…hes pretty much Hitler 2.0.

Comments are closed.


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