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New poll shows Marco Rubio leading Jeb Bush for the first time in Florida

in 2017/Top Headlines by

For the first time in this election cycle, Marco Rubio now leads Jeb Bush in a Florida presidential poll.

However, both still trail Donald Trump in a new survey from Florida Atlantic University (initially published by Anthony Mann in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel) released on Wednesday.

The New York City real estate magnate maintains a double-digit lead over anyone else in Florida, taking 31.5 percent of the Republican vote. Rubio is in second place with 19.2 percent. Bush is third with just 11. 3 percent.

Rubio has won high praise for his performance in last week’s debate at the Reagan Library. Bush? Not so much.

Retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson, a West Palm Beach resident, is in fourth place with 10. 3 percent.

Carly Fiorina, being described by national political pundits as the hottest candidate in the race, comes in fifth in the FAU survey with 8.3 percent.

On the Democratic Party side, as per every public opinion poll taken in the Sunshine State, Hillary Clinton is dominating. She gets 59.5 percent support. Vice President Joe Biden, not even a candidate yet, scores higher than Bernie Sanders with 15.9 percent. Sanders is next with 15.2 percent.

However, the FAU survey shows that Floridians would prefer any of the Florida-based Republicans over Clinton in a one-on-one matchup.

The general election numbers:

• Carson had 51.7 percent of the Florida vote to Clinton’s 39.5 percent.

• Rubio had 50.4 percent to Clinton’s 42.2 percent.

• Bush beat Clinton, 49.1 percent to 40.9 percent.

• Trump and Clinton were statistically tied, with 45.9 percent for him and 44.5 percent for her. (Trump is an occasional Palm Beach County resident.)

The survey was conducted by the Florida Atlantic University Business and Economics Polling Initiative in the College of Business. The survey of 298 Democratic likely voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 5.6 percentage points. The survey of 352 Republican likely voters has a margin of error of 5.2 percentage points. The general election survey, of 801 registered voters, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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