TAMPA, Fla. — Floridians are giving overall bipartisan approval to both President Joe Biden and Governor Ron DeSantis on a variety of issues, according to a new University of South Florida poll.
The poll found President Biden currently has majority approval for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic (61 percent), jobs/economy (53 percent), race relations (51 percent), and climate change (51 percent). At the same time, Governor DeSantis has majority approval for jobs/economy (60 percent) and the COVID-19 pandemic (52 percent).
Not surprisingly, there is a partisan divide between the support for the two leaders with Republicans more likely to disapprove of Biden’s performance and Democrats more likely to give a thumbs down to DeSantis’ role.
The primary issue voters are focused on right now continues to be the COVID-19 pandemic. Among Democrats, 38 percent labeled it the top issue; 32 percent of independents said it was the most important issue, and 22 percent of Republicans said COVID-19 remained the top issue. The poll found the economy was the second most chosen issue by Floridians.
When it comes to who the public trusts to give them guidance on COVID-19 and the vaccine, nearly 75 percent are very or somewhat confident in the vaccine guidance coming from public health officials. Democrats had the most confidence at 86 percent followed by independents at 71 percent and Republicans split evenly at 50 percent.
More than seven in 10 respondents said they support passage of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure plan with 35 percent strongly supporting it and 37 percent at least somewhat supportive. President Biden has made infrastructure spending a key issue in his first year in office.
Finally, with ransomware wreaking havoc in Florida cities and businesses, the USF poll found 56 percent of Floridians said they would support a state-level ban on paying ransoms to cyber-attackers.