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Republican incumbents Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Marco Rubio are leading their midterm races in Florida, according to a new statewide poll that also found inflation was the most important issue to most registered voters in the state.
A new AARP poll suggests that GOP front-runner DeSantis holds only a 3-point edge over Democrat opponent Crist, 50%-47%.
Among voters over 50 years old, DeSantis leads with 52% support compared to Crist’s 45%. DeSantis is also leading among Hispanic voters over 50 in the Sunshine State by two percentage points.
“Florida voters 50 and older are a critical voting demographic that all candidates are competing for in this midterm election,” said Jeff Johnson, state director of AARP Florida, in a press release Wednesday.
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Johnson continued to stress the importance of appealing to 50-plus voters in the state.
“With the price of necessities like groceries, housing and health care so high, Florida residents want their leaders to provide solutions to inflation and the rising cost of living. The message is clear, if candidates want to win, they should pay attention to the issues that matter to Floridians 50-plus,” Johnson said.
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About 51% of registered voters think that the state is heading in the wrong direction, while 49% believe it is on the right track. Around 76% of Floridians believe the country is headed in the wrong direction.
The poll suggested that Republicans are leading Democrats on the generic congressional ballot by two points, 48%-46%, while President Joe Biden received a 56% disapproval rating among voters in the state.
In the state’s Senate race, Rubio is leading with 49% support, while Democratic Rep. Val Demings, D-Fla., is close behind with 47% support from registered Florida voters.
Nearly 20% of Florida voters said inflation and rising prices were the most important issues facing the state, 14% said jobs and the economy were of top concern, and 12% believe abortion is the leading issue.
Rubio recently fired shots at Demings for her stance on abortion, claiming that she supports abortion without limitations.
“The reason why she can’t is, you can’t have 100% from Planned Parenthood and 100% from NARAL and not believe in abortion on demand, taxpayer-funded, at any point in a pregnancy. At any point.” Rubio told a group of faith leaders in Davie, Florida, Thursday.
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Fabrizio Ward & Impact Research conducted the AARP survey from Aug. 24-31, 2022, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.