Trump Leads Florida Poll, DeSantis Trails Behind: Implications for 2024 Election

In a recent poll conducted in Florida, former President Donald Trump has emerged as the clear frontrunner among likely Republican primary voters. The poll, conducted by the University of North Florida’s Public Opinion Research Lab, showed that Trump garnered the support of 60% of respondents, while Florida Governor Ron DeSantis trailed far behind with only 21% support.[0]

This significant lead for Trump is seen as a blow to DeSantis, who has been widely considered a rising star within the Republican Party and a potential contender for the 2024 presidential election. Despite DeSantis’s historically high approval ratings in the polls, his loss of momentum in his home state does not bode well for his national campaign, according to political science professor Michael Binder.[1]

The poll also asked respondents about their opinions on Trump’s actions following the 2020 election.[2] A majority of likely Republican primary voters in Florida, 71% to be exact, believed that Trump was “just exercising his right to contest the election.”[2] Only 16% felt that he “went so far that he threatened American democracy.”[0]

This strong support for Trump among Florida Republicans is not surprising, given his popularity within the party. However, it is worth noting that the 16% who believed Trump threatened democracy tended to favor DeSantis narrowly over other potential contenders like Nikki Haley.[0]

In addition to the presidential election, the poll also asked respondents about their preferences in the 2026 Florida gubernatorial election.[3] Interestingly, a large portion of respondents, 40%, either did not know who they would vote for or refused to answer.[4] Among those who did express a preference, 22% indicated support for Casey DeSantis, the governor’s wife.[5] Byron Donalds and Matt Gaetz received 9% of the potential early support each.[6]

The poll also shed light on the level of trust that likely Republican primary voters in Florida have in the U.S. House of Representatives.[1] Nearly 60% of respondents expressed little to no trust in the House, while only 8% said they had a great deal of trust.[6] This lack of trust in the House could be attributed to recent events, such as the removal of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, which had a negative impact on the opinions of about a third of likely Republican voters, according to Professor Binder.[6]

Looking ahead to the 2024 presidential election, pollster Frank Luntz declared that Trump was the “weakest” major Republican candidate to pit against Joe Biden.[7] Luntz suggested that other potential contenders such as Nikki Haley, Chris Christie, and Ron DeSantis would have a better chance of defeating Biden.

Despite Trump’s current lead in the polls, it is important to note that the 2024 election is still a long way off, and many things can change between now and then. However, this poll serves as a strong indication of Trump’s continued popularity among Republican voters, while also highlighting the challenges that DeSantis may face in his national campaign.

0. “Trump leads DeSantis by 39 points in FLORIDA: Poll shows ex-president dominating his rival in their home state” Daily Mail, 7 Nov. 2023,

1. “Trump Has Monster Lead on DeSantis in Florida, Poll Shows” Yahoo News, 7 Nov. 2023,

2. “Poll: 71% of Florida GOP voters agree Trump was ‘Just exercising his right to contest the election’”, 7 Nov. 2023,

3. “Trump beating up DeSantis in governor’s backyard as 2024 contest widens” Colorado Springs Gazette, 7 Nov. 2023,

4. “Florida poll shows Trump crushing DeSantis among state’s Republican voters” South Florida Sun Sentinel, 7 Nov. 2023,

5. “UNF Poll: Trump Pulls Ahead in Florida Republican Presidential Primary” WQCS, 7 Nov. 2023,

6. “UNF poll of likely Republican voters in Florida shows low trust in U.S. House not helped by Speaker’s ousting” WJXT News4JAX , 7 Nov. 2023,

7. “Frank Luntz Pronounces Trump As ‘Weakest Republican’: Haley, DeSantis, and Christie Would All ‘Crush’ Biden in 2024” Mediaite, 7 Nov. 2023,

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