Exclusive Florida Decides Poll: Rubio, Murphy neck-and-neck in Senate race

By Dalia Dangerfield and Audrea Huff, Team Coverage
Last Updated: Tuesday, June 28, 2016, 5:06 PM EDT
More poll results

Republican Marco Rubio has a fight on his hands against Democrat Patrick Murphy in his bid to keep his U.S. Senate seat, an exclusive statewide News 13/Bay News 9 poll shows.

  • Rubio, Murphy tied in US Senate race, exclusive poll reveals
  • Rubio handily ahead in Aug. 30 GOP primary
  • Voters largely undecided in Democratic primary

According to the results of a Florida Decides poll conducted June 25-27, Rubio and Murphy both would earn 43 percent of the vote, if the November general election for Senate were today.

Another 8 percent of those surveyed were undecided.

Rubio is far ahead of his Republican rivals in the Aug. 30 GOP primary, according to the Florida Decides poll. Sixty-three percent of those surveyed would vote for Rubio. Another 13 percent are undecided. His next closest rival, Manatee County homebuilder Carlos Beruff, would get 11 percent of the vote.

Last week, Rubio reversed a previous vow not to run for re-election. He suspended his presidential campaign the night of the Florida presidential primary in March. In May, several prominent Republicans encouraged the first-term senator to reconsider his decision, and two days before the filing deadline, he re-entered the Senate race.

On the Democratic side, about 35 percent of those surveyed said they were undecided, if the primary were held today. But Murphy is ahead of Alan Grayson, 30 percent to 21 percent, in that primary. Even though more than a third of Democrats said they don't know who they'll vote for, GOP candidates are focusing their attacks on Murphy. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has endorsed the congressman, and Vice President Joe Biden stumped for Murphy during a visit to Orlando last month for an appearance at the Invictus Games.

Join us for more exclusive poll results Wednesday morning, starting at 5 a.m., and find out who Florida voters would choose for president if the election were held today.


Detailed poll results

Q: If the August 30 Republican primary for U.S. Senate were today, and Marco Rubio, Dwight Young, Carlos Beruff and Ernie Rivera were the Republican primary candidates, who would you vote for? (candidate names were rotated)

  All
Gender Age Race
Male Female 18-34 35-49 50-64 65+ White Black Asian/
Other
Marco Rubio
63% 60% 66% 60% 57% 63% 67% 65% ** 39%
Dwight Young
10% 12% 9% 13% 11% 12% 7% 9% ** 29%
Carlos Beruff
11% 13% 9% 7% 8% 12% 14% 11% ** 13%
Ernie Rivera
2% 2% 1% 7% 2% 1% 1% 2% ** 1%
Undecided
13% 12% 15% 13% 22% 11% 10% 13% ** 18%
Composition of likely
GOP primary voters
100% 52% 48% 11% 22% 31% 36% 92% 2% 6%
  Party Affiliation
Strong
Rep.
Republican Ind. lean
Rep.
Independent Ind. lean
Dem.
Democrat
Strong
Dem.
Composition of likely/actual
GOP primary voters
46% 34% 15% 2% 1% 1% 1%
Marco Rubio
67% 70% 47% ** ** ** **
Dwight Young
8% 8% 19% ** ** ** **
Carlos Beruff
12% 9% 11% ** ** ** **
Ernie Rivera
1% 2% 4% ** ** ** **
Undecided
11% 11% 18% ** ** ** **
  Ideology Tea Party
  Very Conserv. Conserv. Moderate Liberal Very Lib. Yes No
Composition of likely/actual
GOP primary voters
34% 39% 21% 3% 1% 24% 67%
Marco Rubio 71% 65% 52% ** ** 65% 65%
Dwight Young 7% 9% 16% ** ** 10% 9%
Carlos Beruff 12% 13% 8% ** ** 16% 10%
Ernie Rivera 2% 1% 4% ** ** 1% 2%
Undecided 9% 12% 20% ** ** 8% 14%
  Education Income
  High School Some College 4-yr College < $40K $40K - $80K > $80K
Composition of likely/actual
GOP primary voters
18% 34% 48% 24% 36% 40%
Marco Rubio 62% 63% 65% 63% 62% 65%
Dwight Young
12% 12% 8% 14% 9% 9%
Carlos Beruff
11% 10% 11% 9% 12% 11%
Ernie Rivera
2% 1% 3% 2% 3% 1%
Undecided 13% 14% 13% 12% 14% 14%

Surveyed: 555 likely August GOP primary voters
Margin of sampling error: ± 4.1%

** Too few respondents of this type were interviewed for this data to be meaningful.


Q: If the August 30 Democratic primary for U.S. Senate were today, and Alan Grayson, Patrick Murphy, Pam Keith, Rocky De La Fuente and Reginald Luster were were the Democratic primary candidates, who would you vote for? (candidate names were rotated)

  All Gender
Age
Race
Male
Female
18-34
35-49
50-64
65+
White
Black
Asian/
Other
Alan Grayson
21% 22% 20% 13% 18% 22% 27% 24% 13% 12%
Patrick Murphy
30% 32% 28% 22% 19% 34% 37% 32% 21% 40%
Pam Keith 10% 11% 9% 8% 11% 13% 7% 10% 12% 3%
Rocky De La Fuente 2% 2% 1% 2% 1% 1% 2% 2% 2% 1%
Reginald Luster 3% 2% 3% 7% 5% 0% 1% 3% 2% 7%
Undecided 35%
31% 39% 48% 45% 29% 27% 31% 49% 37%
Composition of likely/actual
Dem. primary voters
100% 45% 55% 16% 23% 31% 30% 72% 22% 6%
  Party Affiliation
Strong
Rep.
Republican Ind. lean
Rep.
Independent Ind. lean
Dem.
Democrat
Strong
Dem.
Composition of likely/actual
Dem. primary voters
1% 1% 2% 4% 14% 37% 40%
Alan Grayson
** ** ** ** 29% 14% 23%
Patrick Murphy
** ** ** ** 18% 28% 37%
Pam Keith ** ** ** ** 15% 7% 9%
Rocky De La Fuente ** ** ** ** 2% 3% 1%
Reginald Luster ** ** ** ** 1% 5% 1%
Undecided
** ** ** ** 36% 43% 28%
  Ideology Tea Party
Very Conserv. Conserv. Moderate Liberal Very Lib. Yes No
Composition of likely/actual
Dem. primary voters
8% 9% 34% 27% 18% 6% 89%
Alan Grayson
19% 17% 13% 30% 25% 19%
22%
Patrick Murphy
36% 28% 28% 32% 30% 39%
29%
Pam Keith 11% 7% 15% 7% 8% 10% 10%
Rocky De La Fuente 4% 3% 2% 1% 1% 1% 2%
Reginald Luster 6% 4% 2% 3% 1% 11% 2%
Undecided 25% 41% 41% 27% 35% 20%
35%
  Education Income
High School Some College 4-yr College < $40K $40K - $80K > $80K
Composition of likely/actual
Dem. primary voters
13% 34% 52% 26% 42% 33%
Alan Grayson
15% 24% 21% 24% 20% 21%
Patrick Murphy
41% 23% 31% 29% 25% 36%
Pam Keith 6% 11% 10% 9% 9% 11%
Rocky De La Fuente 3% 2% 1% 2% 2% 0%
Reginald Luster 7% 2% 2% 2% 3% 2%
Undecided 28% 38% 36% 35% 40% 29%

Surveyed: 618 likely August Democratic primary voters
Margin of sampling error: ± 4.0%

** Too few respondents of this type were interviewed for this data to be meaningful.


Q: If the November election for U.S. senator from Florida were today, and Marco Rubio (R) and Patrick Murphy (D) were the candidates on the ballot, who would you vote for?

  All Gender
Age
Race
Male
Female
18-34
35-49
50-64
65+
White
Black
Asian/
Other
Marco Rubio (R)
43%
46%
40%
39%
42%
42%
47%
48%
16%
37%
Patrick Murphy (D)
43%
43%
42%
41%
42%
44%
43%
39%
67%
41%
Other 7% 6% 7% 7% 7% 6% 7% 6% 9% 15%
Undecided 8%
4%
11%
12%
9%
8%
4%
8%
8%
8%
Composition of likely/actual
November voters
100%
48%
52%
15%
25%
30%
30%
80%
13%
7%
  Party Affiliation
Strong
Rep.
Republican Ind. lean
Rep.
Independent Ind. lean
Dem.
Democrat
Strong
Dem.
Composition of likely/actual
November voters
18% 15% 12% 9% 11% 19% 17%
Marco Rubio (R)
84%
84%
66%
36%
15%
14%
6%
Patrick Murphy (D)
6%
7%
15%
34%
70%
71%
87%
Other 6% 2% 12% 16% 9% 5% 3%
Undecided
4%
7%
6%
14%
7%
11%
4%
  Ideology Tea Party
Very Conserv. Conserv. Moderate Liberal Very Lib. Yes No
Composition of likely/actual
November voters
16% 23% 31% 16% 9% 11% 80%
Marco Rubio (R)
75%
73%
33%
13%
6%
74%
38%
Patrick Murphy (D)
15%
14%
49%
76%
81%
19%
48%
Other 7% 7% 7% 4% 5% 6% 6%
Undecided 2%
6%
10%
6%
8%
2%
8%
  Abortion Gun owner
Pro-life
Pro-choice
Yes No
Composition of likely/actual
November voters
38% 57% 40% 54%
Marco Rubio (R)
67%
27%
56%
31%
Patrick Murphy (D)
21%
59%
32%
54%
Other 6% 6% 6% 7%
Undecided 6%
8%
7%
8%
  Education Income
High School Some College 4-yr College < $40K $40K - $80K > $80K
Composition of likely/actual
November voters
16% 33% 51% 27% 38% 35%
Marco Rubio (R)
45%
46%
40%
40%
43%
45%
Patrick Murphy (D)
36%
40%
47%
40%
43%
45%
Other 10% 8% 5% 10% 6% 4%
Undecided 10%
6%
8%
9%
8%
6%

Surveyed: 1,678 likely November voters
Margin of sampling error: ± 2.4%

This Florida Decides Exclusive Statewide Poll was conducted by SurveyUSA from June 25-27. Research began as soon as names on the primary ballots were finalized June 24. Most interviews were completed after the results of the British vote to leave the European Union were announced. Of the 2,000 adults interviewed, 1,873 were registered to vote. Of the registered voters, 555 were determined by SurveyUSA to be eligible and likely to vote in the August 30 Democratic primary, and 618 were determined by SurveyUSA to be eligible and likely to vote in the August 30 Republican primary. Only voters eligible and likely to vote in each primary were asked the Senate primary horse-race questions. This research was conducted using blended sample, mixed mode. Respondents reachable on their home telephone (66 percent of likely November voters) were interviewed on their home telephone in the recorded voice of a professional announcer. Respondents not reachable on a home telephone (34 percent of likely voters) were shown a questionnaire on their smartphone, tablet or other electronic device.