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Gov. On Low Approval Numbers: "Only November 2014 Matters"

Governor Rick Scott is shrugging off new poll numbers from the Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling group that show him training well behind potential Democratic Challengers.

"Scott continues to trail Charlie Crist by double digits in a hypothetical match up, 52/40. That's just a slight improvement for him from January when he was down 53/39. Crist, who still has a 28 percent favorability rating with Republicans, wins over 29 percent of the Republican vote and also has a narrow lead with independents at 47/41," said Tom Jensen, director of the Public Policy Polling Institute.

"Crist still isn't as popular as he used to be- a 46/43 favorability rating- but that's good enough against the backdrop of Scott's unpopularity to give him a pretty substantial early advantage."

Scott also trails former state Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink 45/40 but does lead former state Democratic Senator Nan Rich 42/36.

The poll shows his overall approval remains at 33 percent, and fell two points among Republicans to 46/42 percent. When asked about his perpetually low ratings, Scott shrugged it off.

“There’s one poll that matters. That’s November 2014. I’m working to make sure every citizen of this state has a job. Every citizen of the state knows their family can get a great education, and that we can keep the cost of living low," he said to reporters following a Tuesday Cabinet meeting.

Scott has made job creation his priority and the state’s unemployment rate fell below the national average last month. According to the poll the Governor is still dealing with anger from his Conservative base for embracing an expansion of Medicaid under the federal healthcare law.

From the Public Policy Polling Institute:

Only 42 percent of Republican primary voters say they want Scott to be their candidate again next year to 43% who say they would prefer someone else. It's moderate Republicans who really want to dump Scott (34/55) while ones identifying as 'somewhat' (43/38) or 'very' (46/42) conservative tepidly support him. Scott does at least lead named potential primary challengers at this point- it's 46/27 over Pam Bondi, 48/24 over Adam Putnam, and 54/13 over Ted Yoho.

The Quinnipiac Polling Institute will release its survey tomorrow.

Follow @HatterLynn

Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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