Suffolk University Poll Shows Trump and Biden Tied in Florida

Both candidates polling at 45 percent among likely voters

President Donald Trump and Former Vice President Joe Biden are neck and neck in Florida, with both candidates polling at 45 percent, according to a Suffolk University/USA TODAY poll of voters likely to cast ballots in the November presidential election. Libertarian Jo Jorgensen was the choice of 2 percent of voters, Socialism and Liberation nominee Gloria LaRiva received 1 percent, and 6 percent of voters were undecided. 

There are seven candidates listed on the Florida ballot. 

Demographic divide 

  • Gender: Trump leads 47 – 42 among men while Biden leads 49 – 44 among women.
  • Issues: Trump leads 81 – 11 among those who said jobs/economy is the most important issue, and Biden leads 75 – 20 among those who said COVID-19 is most important and 55 – 35 among those who say bringing the country together is most important.
  • Race: Trump leads 57 – 41 among whites, while Biden leads 81 – 3 among Black voters. 

“Here we go again,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center. “Like 2016, both party nominees match up evenly, so the Florida outcome boils down to third-party voters and casual undecided voters, who are mostly independents with no party affiliation or loyalty.”

The poll indicated that 15 percent of independents are undecided compared to just 6 percent among all voters.

Debate

Among undecided voters who watched the debate, 21 percent said Biden won, while 11 percent said Trump won. However, an overwhelming 63 percent claimed neither candidate won. Trump’s base seemed to be displeased with the President’s performance; only 49 percent of likely Trump voters who tuned in to the debate said he won. Conversely, 82 percent of likely Biden voters who watched believed he won.

SCOTUS

President Trump’s recent nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court may not prove to be as impactful as he hoped, with Democrats and Republicans alike (56 percent and 64 percent respectively) saying it makes “no difference” in their likelihood to vote for President Trump. Undecided voters were similarly unaffected, as 76 percent said the nomination made no difference. Fifty-seven percent among voters over the age of 65 and 56 percent among Hispanics – two of Florida’s biggest and most competitive demographics – answer the same way. 

Coronavirus

Trump continues to see low scores in response to his handling of COVID-19. When voters were asked to rate President Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, 45 percent scored him as poor with 13 percent giving him a fair rating; 24 percent said Trump was doing a good job, while 18 percent gave him an excellent rating. Seniors were also more likely to give Trump low scores, with 47 percent feeling he’s done a poor job.

At the same time, voters approve of opening Florida’s economy; 50 percent of all voters support Governor Ron DeSantis lifting all restrictions on restaurants and bars while just 43 percent opposed and 7 percent were undecided.

Mail-in voting

A majority of Florida voters are worried that widespread mail-in voting will lead to voter fraud, with 52 percent indicating they are very or somewhat concerned; 45 percent of voters are either not very concerned or not at all concerned of widespread mail-in voting leading to voter fraud. Perhaps due to these worries, 63 percent – nearly two thirds of voters – will be voting in person either on or before election day. Meanwhile, 88 percent of voters believe it is either very easy or easy to vote in Florida.

Methodology

The Florida survey of 500 likely voters was conducted Oct. 1 – Oct. 4, using live telephone interviews of households where respondents indicated they were very or somewhat likely to vote in the 2020 general election. The margin of error is +/-4.4 percentage points at a 95 percent level of confidence. Marginals and full cross-tabulation data are posted on the Suffolk University Political Research Center website: www.suffolk.edu/SUPRC. For more information, contact David Paleologos at 781-290-9310, dpaleologos@suffolk.edu

 

Media Contact

Greg Gatlin
Office of Public Affairs
617-573-8428
ggatlin@suffolk.edu