UPDATE: A second independent poll now confirms that Ron DeSantis is the frontrunner for the Republican nomination for governor. First reported by Politico Florida, the survey conducted by top Republican pollster Tony Fabrizio shows DeSantis with a 12 point lead over Putnam (42-30) among registered voters. That lead jumps to 17 points (47-30) among likely Republican voters. The key factor to DeSantis lead is clear – President Donald Trump. More than half of the 349 Republicans surveyed for the poll were aware that President Trump had endorsed DeSantis.
Even more worrisome for Putnam, according to the poll, his ads aren’t connecting with GOP voters. The poll was taken before Putnam launched his latest commercial attacking DeSantis votes on issues impacting seniors. According to the new poll, Republicans who are 65 or older are backing DeSantis by 25 points.
ORIGINAL STORY: For the first time in an independent poll of the Republican race for Florida governor, Congressman Ron DeSantis has taken the lead over Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. A Gravis Marketing poll has DeSantis leading Putnam 35%-29%. This is the first public poll since President Trump endorsed DeSantis.
It’s a remarkable turnaround for Congressman DeSantis, who has flipped the race upside down. Putnam led in multiple polls by 15-17 points just two weeks.
“It’s clear Republicans are excited about an Iraq veteran and solid conservative who’s endorsed by the President,” said Dave Vasquez, the DeSantis Campaign press secretary. “All of the momentum is on DeSantis’ side now with thousands of supporters turning out to campaign events, The President firmly backing him and now a $12 Million TV ad campaign hitting the airwaves.”
DeSantis has momentum on his side, as FLA News reported Monday morning. Besides the Trump endorsement, Congressman DeSantis has benefited from his frequent live appearances on Fox News. That relationship has led to DeSantis also receiving the endorsements of Fox News and radio talk show hosts Sean Hannity and Mark Levin.
In the Democratic primary for governor, the Gravis Marketing poll has former Congresswoman Gwen Graham in first place with 27%. She leads Jeff Greene at 18%, Philip Levine at 17% and Andrew Gillum at 10%.
In head-to-head match-ups featuring the Republican and Democrat candidates: DeSantis leads Gillum and Levine, ties Green and trails Graham 42%-38%. Putnam leads all Democrats in the race with the closest competitor being Gwen Graham at 40%-39%.