According to a new PPP survey, Florida Gov. Rick Scott has alienated the state’s Independents to such a degree that 45% of the state’s Independents say they are less likely to support the 2012 Republican nominee.
When PPP asked the question does Rick Scott make you more or less likely to support the GOP nominee, the answer revealed the extent of the damage that the governor is doing to his party in the state. Forty five percent of Independents said that Scott makes them less likely to support the Republican nominee. Scott has also made 57% of Democrats less likely to support the nominee, and even 17% of Florida Republicans are less likely to support their nominee.
By ideology, 51% of those who consider themselves somewhat liberal and moderate are less likely to support the GOP nominee in 2012 due to Scott. By a margin of 31%-28% those who consider themselves somewhat conservative are less likely support the Republican candidate for president. Only those who consider themselves very conservative (57%) said that Scott has made them more likely to support the GOP nominee.
I have previously written about how Rick Scott is making Obama more popular in Florida, and about how Scott is actually causing Republicans to leave their own party, but the biggest damage that he could do to the 2012 GOP nominee is if he alienates Independents. Obama has had his struggles with Independents, but if Scott has turned them off to such a degree that almost half of them are inclined not to support the GOP nominee this could make winning the state a huge challenge for the GOP.
The Republican nominee has to win some combination of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida to defeat Obama. The problem is that three of the most unpopular Republican governors in America are residing in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida. As the governor’s approval rating has plummeted in each of these states, Obama’s lead in match ups against potential Republican opponents has grown.
On Monday, Rick Scott signed into law an unemployment benefits reform that it will make it more difficult for workers to get benefits, more difficult to keep their benefits, and it reduced the number of weeks of benefits to a national low of 23 weeks. This will not help Republicans woo those Independents.
Rick Scott is poisoning the Florida well for the 2012 Republican nominee. He is thoroughly wrecking the Republican brand that no nominee may be able flip the state from blue to red in 2012.