In its first poll in 2013 of Florida, Public Policy Polling finds that Marco Rubio has the edge over his mentor, Jeb Bush, as the preferred choice of Republicans to be the party’s 2016 presidential nominee.
62% of GOP voters in the state want Rubio to run in 2016, compared to 49% for Bush. Overall 31% of voters say they’d like Rubio to be their 2016 candidate to 26% for Bush, 11% for Mike Huckabee, 7% for Chris Christie, 5% for Bobby Jindal, Rand Paul, and Paul Ryan, and 2% for Rick Perry and Susana Martinez.
Rubio’s lead is based on his strength among voters describing themselves as ‘very conservative.’ He gets 39% with them to just 20% for Bush. The two are about tied when everyone else is factored in. One thing noteworthy in the crosstabs related to Christie is that he’s the choice of just 1% of voters describing themselves as ‘very conservative,’ putting him in last place among everyone we polled.