February 10, 2015 - Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania Voters Are Optimistic, Quinnipiac University Swing State Poll Finds; Good Grades For Kasich, Wolf, But Not Scott Quinnipiac University Polling Logo
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Voters are optimistic in the key swing states of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, looking forward to the next four years under their respective governors, according to a Quinnipiac University Swing State Poll released today.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf get good grades, while Florida Gov. Rick Scott continues his streak of voter disapproval, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN- uh-pe-ack) University Poll finds. The Swing State Poll focuses on Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania because since 1960 no candidate has won the presidential race without taking at least two of these three states.

Ohio voters approve 55 - 30 percent of the job Gov. Kasich is doing, while Florida voters give Gov. Scott a negative 42 - 47 percent job approval rating. Since Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf took office just last month, voters were asked whether they have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of him, rather than a job approval question. Wolf gets a 52 - 24 percent favorability.

Approval ratings for the Swing States' six U.S. senators, however, are tepid, with none topping 47 percent.

Voter satisfaction in each of the three states ranges from 54 percent to 72 percent. About 60 percent of voters in Florida and Ohio rate their state economy as "excellent" or "good," while only 46 percent of Pennsylvania voters see their state economy doing well.

Florida

Florida voters approve 47 - 35 percent of the job U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is doing and say 44 - 37 percent that he deserves reelection in 2016.

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson gets a 43 - 26 percent job approval grade.

A total of 67 percent of voters are "very satisfied" or "somewhat satisfied" with the way things are going in Florida, and 59 percent say the state economy is "excellent" or "good."

They are better off than they were a year ago, 46 percent of voters say while 25 percent say they are worse off and 28 percent say they are the same.

By a 53 - 39 percent margin, voters are generally optimistic about the next four years with Scott as governor.

"Florida Gov. Rick Scott has never been popular. He spent virtually his entire first term with a negative job approval and was reelected by the narrowest of margins. Now he is back underwater with voters," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"But it doesn't matter because the one time he had more supporters than opponents was when it counted - on Election Day. Even though Florida voters have a negative view of him, they are optimistic about the next four years with him in control.

"U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio's decision about running for the White House will have a major effect on the Senate race. The numbers show that he is in good, but not great, shape for re- election with voters and has a positive image with them. If he does not seek a second term, his open Senate seat will become a major prize and the subject of a massive free-for-all among both parties."

Ohio

Ohio voters approve 40 - 21 percent of the job U.S. Sen. Rob Portman is doing and say 37 - 28 percent that he deserves reelection in 2016.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown gets a 45 - 27 percent job approval.

A total of 72 percent of voters are "very satisfied" or "somewhat satisfied" with the way things are going in Ohio, and 60 percent say the state economy is "excellent" or "good."

They are better off than they were a year ago, 45 percent of voters say while 30 percent say they are worse off and 24 percent say they are the same.

By a big 66 - 24 percent margin, Ohio voters are optimistic about the next four years with Kasich as governor.

"While Gov. John Kasich decides whether to take the presidential plunge, he has plenty of good will left with Buckeye voters. With a 55 percent job approval rating, he has little to worry about at home. Voters are optimistic about Ohio's future under Gov. Kasich," Brown said.

"U.S. Sen. Rob Portman is 10 points short of the 50 percent job approval mark as he begins his quest for a second term, not a place in which an incumbent likes to be," Brown added. He falls further behind, to 37 percent, on the more critical question of whether he should get another six-year stretch in Washington, D.C., a number that might interest potential challengers."

Pennsylvania

U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey leads possible Democratic challenger Joe Sestak 45 - 35 percent in an early look at a possible rematch in 2016. Toomey gets a 43 - 25 percent approval rating from Pennsylvania voters, who say 37 - 29 percent that he deserves reelection. His favorability rating is 37 - 21 percent.

For Sestak, 64 percent of voters don't know enough about him to form an opinion.

U.S. Sen. Robert Casey Jr. gets a 40 - 24 percent approval rating.

A total of 54 percent of voters are "very satisfied" or "somewhat satisfied" with the way things are going in Pennsylvania, and 46 percent say the state economy is "excellent" or "good."

They are better off than they were a year ago, 43 percent of voters say while 30 percent say they are worse off and 26 percent say they are the same.

By a 62 - 27 percent margin, Pennsylvania voters are optimistic about the next four years under newly-elected Gov. Tom Wolf.

"The political air is full of optimism in Pennsylvania: new Gov. Tom Wolf seems to have the confidence of the electorate and folks think the state of the state is on the upswing," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. "U.S. Senators Pat Toomey and Robert Casey seem caught in the negative feelings about Washington, with just so-so approval ratings. But early in the game, Sen. Toomey tops former rival Joe Sestak by 10 percentage points."

From January 22 - February 1 Quinnipiac University surveyed:
  • 936 Florida voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent;
  • 943 Ohio voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent;
  • 881 Pennsylvania voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.3 percent.
Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa, Colorado and the nation as a public service and for research. For more information, visit http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter @QuinnipiacPoll.

15d. (PA only) If the election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Joe Sestak the Democrat and Pat Toomey the Republican, for whom would you vote?
                     PA
 
Sestak               35%
Toomey               45
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       - 
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      3
DK/NA                17
 
 
15e. (PA only) Is your opinion of Pat Toomey favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     PA
                     Toomey
 
Favorable            37%
Unfavorable          21
Hvn't hrd enough     41
REFUSED               1
 
 
15f. (PA only) Is your opinion of Joe Sestak favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     PA
                     Sestak
 
Favorable            23%
Unfavorable          12
Hvn't hrd enough     64
REFUSED               1
 
 
16ab. (FL/OH only) Do you approve or disapprove of the way - (FL) Rick Scott / (OH) John Kasich - is handling his job as Governor?
                     FL          OH        
                     Scott       Kasich
                                 
Approve              42%         55%
Disapprove           47          30 
DK/NA                11          16 
 
 
16c. (PA only) Is your opinion of Tom Wolf favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     PA 
                     Wolf
 
Favorable            52%
Unfavorable          24
Hvn't hrd enough     23
REFUSED               2
 
 
17abc. Are you generally optimistic or pessimistic about the next four years with - (FL) Rick Scott / (OH) John Kasich / (PA) Tom Wolf - as governor?
                     FL          OH          PA
                     Scott       Kasich      Wolf
 
Optimistic           53%         66%         62%
Pessimistic          39          24          27
DK/NA                 8          10          10
 
 
18abc-19abc. Do you approve or disapprove of the way - (FL) Bill Nelson, Marco Rubio / (OH) Sherrod Brown, Rob Portman / (PA) Bob Casey Jr., Pat Toomey - is handling his job as United States Senator?
                     FL...............       OH.................     PA................
                     Nelson      Rubio       Brown       Portman     Casey Jr.   Toomey
                                                                                       
Approve              43%         47%         45%         40%         40%         43%   
Disapprove           26          35          27          21          24          25    
DK/NA                31          18          27          38          36          32    
 
 
20abc. Looking ahead to the 2016 election for United States Senator, do you feel that - (FL) Marco Rubio / (OH) Rob Portman / (PA) Pat Toomey - deserves to be reelected, or do you feel that he does not deserve to be reelected?
                     FL          OH          PA
                     Rubio       Portman     Toomey 
                                            
Yes/Deserves         44%         37%         37%
No/Does not          37          28          29
DK/NA                19          35          33
 
 
23abc. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in - (FL) Florida / (OH) Ohio / (PA) Pennsylvania - today; are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                     FL     OH     PA
 
Very satisfied       12%    12%     4%
Smwht satisfied      55     60     50
Smwht dissatisfied   21     20     32
Very dissatisfied    10      8     11
DK/NA                 1      1      3
 
 
24abc. Would you describe the state of - (FL) Florida's / (OH) Ohio's / (PA) Pennsylvania's - economy these days as excellent, good, not so good, or poor?
                     FL     OH     PA
 
Excellent             6%     3%     1%
Good                 53     57     45
Not so good          30     28     40
Poor                  8      9     12
DK/NA                 3      3      1
 
 
25abc. Do you think - (FL) Florida's / (OH) Ohio's / (PA) Pennsylvania's - economy is getting better, getting worse, or staying about the same?
                     FL     OH     PA
 
Better               47%    49%    26%
Worse                 9      9     15
The same             42     40     56
DK/NA                 2      2      2
 
 
26. (ASK ALL) Would you say that you are better off or worse off financially than you were a year ago?
                     FL     OH     PA
 
Better off           46%    45%    43%
Worse off            25     30     30
SAME(VOL)            28     24     26
DK/NA                 1      1      1
 
 
Additional info by state:
Florida: Trends and Crosstabs Sample and Methodology detail
Ohio: Trends and Crosstabs Sample and Methodology detail
Pennsylvania: Trends and Crosstabs Sample and Methodology detail