Poll: Florida's Scott is nation's least-liked governor

The Miami HeraldMay 26, 2011 

Gov. Rick Scott is one of the least popular governors in America, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll that shows 57 percent of Florida voters disapprove of his job performance.

Only 29 percent favor the job Scott is doing, the poll of 1,196 registered voters shows.

Scott’s job-performance numbers mirror public sentiment about the billion state budget, which cuts spending on schools, healthcare and programs for the environment.

Scott plans to cut even more, and is expected Thursday to veto more than $350 million in spending. He’s mulling whether to break predecessor Charlie Crist’s 2007 veto record of $459 million.

The poll finds that 54 percent of voters say the budget is “unfair” to someone like them, while 29 percent favor it.

“The data on the perceived fairness of the governor’s budget is crucial. When voters by almost 2-1 say his approach is unfair to them, that’s a giant flashing political warning sign for Scott,” Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said. “When voters don’t think they are being treated fairly, they tend to react negatively.”

Voters are even more fed up with the economy, perhaps the biggest drag on Scott or any other political leader in the nation. In Florida, 61 percent say they are dissatisfied in general.

Asked Wednesday about his low poll numbers, Scott shrugged them off.

“My job is to get our state back to work. My job is to make sure this is the state that’s most likely to succeed,” he said on WQAM radio’s Sid Rosenberg Show.

Scott’s 29-57 approval rating is the lowest of any governor in the six states polled by Quinnipiac, a Connecticut-based university that also surveys voters in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and its home state. Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn have ratings comparable to Scott’s, though the surveys were taken at different times or by pollsters other than Quinnipiac’s.

Brown said he was unaware of any poll of any other governor showing a lower approval rating. Nor could pollsters John Zogby, Matt Towery, Brad Coker or Tom Jensen. A Herald/Times survey of recent polls of controversial governors in large states showed Scott had the lowest recent approval rating.

To read the complete article, visit www.miamiherald.com.

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