A survey of nearly 3,000 Florida voters reveals unease over the state’s direction, opposition to many of the bills signed into law by Gov. Ron DeSantis, and frustration over rising housing and insurance costs.
Before this spring’s state legislative session, a majority of Floridians believed the state was on the right track (46% right track / 42% wrong track). As the session came to a close, however, 50% believe the state is headed in the wrong direction, while only 42% think it’s on the right track.
Pollsters Florida Watch and Progress Florida, collectively known as the Florida Communications and Research Hub (Hub), attribute this shift in their surveys to Floridians’ growing dissatisfaction with the agenda carried out by Gov. Ron DeSantis and legislators in Tallahassee.
“When we look back on this legislative session, it is clear Floridians do not believe that Gov. DeSantis and legislative leaders focused on the priorities they believed would improve their lives,” said Progress Florida Executive Director Mark Ferrulo.
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DeSantis’ Dramatic Drop
In February, before the legislative session, the Hub’s polling showed DeSantis with a 60% approval rate and the Florida Legislature with 49% support from voters. But by the time the legislative session was winding down, in late April and Early May, their surveys found that the governor’s approval rating dropped by a whopping 19 points (50% approve / 49% disapprove).
According to the Hub, these results can be attributed to erosion among Democrats (-38 pts), No Party Affiliated voters (-16 pts), women (-12 pts), Latinos (-14 pts) – notably Cuban-Americans (-12 pts) – and Black Floridians (-37 pts).
The Florida Legislature’s approval rate also took a hit, dropping to 43% favorable and 47% unfavorable.
- 36% of Floridians cited the cost of home and auto insurance as the top financial stressor in their lives.
- The cost of housing was the main financial stressor for 22% of people across the state.
- 49% of Floridians disapprove of the job DeSantis is doing to make housing more affordable (38% approve).
GOP-Passed Bills Are Unpopular
Results of the recent survey also showed that several key bills passed by Republicans in the legislative session are strongly opposed by a majority of people across the state:
- 78% of Floridians oppose permitless carry of concealed weapons (20% support).
- 56% don’t support the state’s near-total abortion ban (41% support).
- 86% oppose new legislation allowing the governor and legislative leaders to conceal their travel records from the public.
- 60% oppose changing the state’s “resign-to-run” law as DeSantis prepares to launch a campaign for president (31% support).
The Hub surveyed 2,713 registered voters in Florida from April 26-May 3, 2023, as Florida’s legislative session came to a close, with a margin of error of ±1.85% at 95% confidence.