October 21, 2004 - Kerry Closes Gap To Make Florida Too Close To Call, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Senate Race Is A Dead Heat
Democratic challenger John Kerry has nearly closed a seven-point gap among Florida likely voters and now trails President George W. Bush 48 - 47 percent, a statistical tie, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Independent candidate Ralph Nader gets 1 percent.

This compares to President Bush's 51 - 44 percent likely voter lead over Sen. Kerry in an October 7 poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN uh-pe-ack) University.

Among registered voters backing Bush, 80 percent say they are voting mainly for the President. Among Kerry supporters, 56 percent are voting mainly for the Democrat and 39 percent voting mainly against Bush.

"The race in Florida is going down to the wire again. Sen. Kerry, bolstered by his strong showing in the debates, has nearly closed the gap on President Bush. The debates strengthened Kerry's image in Florida, where for the first time more Kerry supporters say their vote means they are voting for the Senator, and not just against President Bush," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

Offered four choices, 28 percent of Florida voters say the economy is the most important issue in the presidential campaign, followed by 26 percent who say terrorism, with 22 percent who say health care and 18 percent who list the situation in Iraq.

"Voter concerns have shifted slightly away from terrorism and Iraq, issues where Bush is stronger, to the economy and health care, issues where Kerry is stronger," Richards said.

Asked who would do a better job on these issues, voters say:
  • 49 - 45 percent that Kerry would do a better job on the economy;
  • 56 - 35 percent that Bush would do a better job on terrorism;
  • 54 - 39 percent that Kerry would do a better job on health care;
  • 52 - 41 percent that Bush would do a better job on the situation in Iraq.
Florida voters give President Bush a 43 - 36 percent favorability rating, with 17 percent mixed, little changed from a September 23 pre-debate poll. Kerry gets a split 36 - 35 percent favorability rating, with 23 percent mixed, compared to a negative 34 - 41 percent pre-debate favorability.

Looking at presidential qualities, Florida voters say:
  • 51 - 43 percent that Bush is more of a leader than Kerry;
  • 50 - 40 percent that Bush does a better job explaining what he will do as President.
Voters say 48 - 45 percent that going to war in Iraq was the right thing to do.

While a total of 86 percent of white voters are "very confident" or "somewhat confident" that their presidential vote will be counted correctly, this confidence drops to 65 percent among black voters and 76 percent among Hispanic voters. Senate Race

In the U.S. Senate race, Republican Mel Martinez and Democrat Betty Castor are locked in a 47 - 47 percent tie among likely voters, compared to 48 - 47 percent October 7.

From October 15 - 19, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,208 Florida registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.8 percentage points. The survey includes 808 likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and the nation as a public service and for research. For additional data -- www.quinnipiac.edu and quicklinks

TREND: If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat, George W. Bush the Republican, and Ralph Nader the Independent for whom would you vote? (If undecided q1) As of today, do you lean more to Kerry, Bush, or Nader? This table includes 'Leaners'

                        Likely Voters................................
                        JK      GWB     RN      SmnEls  Wld'tVt DK/NA 


Oct 21, 2004 47 48 1 - - 4 Oct 7, 2004 44 51 - - - 5



TREND: (If "Nader" q1 or lean Nader) What if Ralph Nader were not running? If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat and George W. Bush the Republican for whom would you vote? This table includes 'Leaners'.

Recalculated Bush vs Kerry matchup without Nader among likely voters.

                        Likely Voters........................
                        JK      GWB     SmnEls  Wld'tVt DK/NA
                        
Oct 21, 2004            47      49       -       -       4
Oct 7, 2004             44      51       -       -       5




TREND: If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat, George W. Bush the Republican, and Ralph Nader the Independent for whom would you vote? (Registered voters)

                        JK      GWB     RN      SmnEls  Wld'tVt DK/NA 


Oct 21, 2004 43 45 2 - - 10 Oct 7, 2004 42 46 1 - - 10 Sep 23, 2004 41 49 5 - - 5 Aug 12, 2004 47 41 4 - 1 6 Jun 29, 2004 43 43 5 1 1 8



TREND: If the election for senator were being held today, and the candidates were Betty Castor the Democrat and Mel Martinez the Republican for whom would you vote? (If undecided q4) As of today, do you lean more to Castor or Martinez? This table includes 'Leaners'

                        Likely Voters.......................
                        BC      MM      SmnEls  Wld'tVt DK/NA


Oct 21, 2004 47 47 - - 5 Oct 7, 2004 47 48 - - 5



TREND: If the election for senator were being held today, and the candidates were Betty Castor the Democrat and Mel Martinez the Republican for whom would you vote? (Registered voters)

                        BC      MM      SmnEls  Wld'tVt DK/NA


Oct 21, 2004 41 43 - 1 15 Oct 7, 2004 44 40 1 1 14 Sep 23, 2004 43 42 - 1 13



TREND: Is your opinion of George W. Bush favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                 Hvn't
                        Fav     Unfav   Mixed    Heard   REFUSED


Oct 21, 2004 43 36 17 3 1 Oct 7, 2004 44 37 17 1 1 Sep 23, 2004 45 36 14 4 1 Aug 12, 2004 38 43 17 2 1 Jun 29, 2004 41 42 15 2 1



TREND: Is your opinion of John Kerry favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                                                 Hvn't
                        Fav     Unfav   Mixed    Heard   REFUSED


Oct 21, 2004 36 35 23 4 2 Oct 7, 2004 36 35 22 6 1 Sep 23, 2004 34 41 19 4 1 Aug 12, 2004 39 31 21 8 1 Jun 29, 2004 30 33 23 14 1



TREND: Do you think going to war with Iraq was the right thing for the United States to do or the wrong thing?

                        Right   Wrong   DK/NA


Oct 21, 2004 48 45 7 Oct 7, 2004 46 49 5 Sep 23, 2004 46 49 5 Aug 12, 2004 45 49 6 Jun 29, 2004 42 49 9



TREND: (If 'planning to vote')How confident are you that your vote in the 2004 presidential election in Florida will be counted correctly - very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident or not confident at all?

                                        Not     Not                           
                        Very    Smwht   Too     At all  DK/NA


Oct 21, 2004 52 30 13 3 2 Aug 12, 2004 47 33 14 5 1



1. If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat, George W. Bush the Republican, and Ralph Nader the Independent for whom would you vote? (If undecided q1) As of today, do you lean more to Kerry, Bush, or Nader? This table includes 'Leaners'

                        Likely
                        Voters
                        
Kerry                   47%
Bush                    48
Nader                    1
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          -
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -
DK/NA                    4




4. (If "Nader" q1 or lean to Nader) What if Ralph Nader were not running? If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat and George W. Bush the Republican for whom would you vote? This table includes 'Leaners'

Recalculated Bush vs Kerry matchup without Nader among likely voters.

                        Likely
                        Voters
                        
Kerry                   47%
Bush                    49
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          -
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -
DK/NA                    4




1. If the election for president were being held today, and the candidates were John Kerry the Democrat, George W. Bush the Republican, and Ralph Nader the Independent for whom would you vote? (Registered voters)

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Kerry 43% 7% 79% 43% 41% 45% 32% Bush 45 85 13 39 46 44 54 Nader 2 - 1 5 2 1 1 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - - 1 1 - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - - - - - 1 - DK/NA 10 8 7 12 11 9 12

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Kerry 35% 42% 43% 32% 52% Bush 55 44 45 58 34 Nader 2 1 1 3 2 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - - 2 - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - - - - 1 DK/NA 8 13 11 5 10

No Coll Coll PRES VOTE 2000 Degree Degree Lib Mod Con Gore Bush

Kerry 42% 45% 68% 52% 19% 85% 12% Bush 45 46 19 36 72 6 77 Nader 2 - 2 2 - 1 1 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - 1 - 1 - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - 1 - - 1 - - DK/NA 11 7 10 10 8 8 8

18-34 35-49 50-64 65+ Wht Blk Hisp

Kerry 49% 41% 40% 46% 38% 75% 42% Bush 39 49 46 41 51 12 42 Nader 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 - - - - - 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - - - - - 1 - DK/NA 10 7 11 12 9 11 13

Annual hshold income <30 30-50 50-100 >100K

Kerry 53% 43% 40% 38% Bush 35 43 51 58 Nader 1 4 1 - SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 - 1 - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - - 1 - DK/NA 10 10 6 4



2. (If candidate choice q1) Is your mind made up, or do you think you might change your mind before the election?

                        Kerry   Bush
                        Vtr q1  Vtr q1


Made up 93% 94% Might change 7 5 DK/NA - 1



3a. (If Kerry voter q1)Is your vote more for Kerry or more against Bush?

                        Kerry 
                        Vtr q1


For Kerry 56% Against Bush 39 DK/NA 5



3b. (If Bush voter q1)Is your vote more for Bush or more against Kerry?

                        Bush
                        Vtr q1


For Bush 80% Against Kerry 15 DK/NA 5



5. If the election for senator were being held today, and the candidates were Betty Castor the Democrat and Mel Martinez the Republican for whom would you vote? (If undecided q5) As of today, do you lean more to Castor or Martinez? This table includes 'Leaners'

                        Likely
                        Voters
                        
Castor                  47%
Martinez                47
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          -
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -
DK/NA                    5




5. If the election for senator were being held today, and the candidates were Betty Castor the Democrat and Mel Martinez the Republican for whom would you vote? (Registered voters)

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Castor 41% 11% 75% 33% 38% 43% 37% Martinez 43 77 13 44 47 39 51 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - 1 - - - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 1 2 1 2 1 1 DK/NA 15 10 10 22 13 16 11

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Castor 34% 43% 41% 30% 46% Martinez 51 40 44 47 38 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - 2 - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 - 1 4 2 DK/NA 14 17 13 19 13

No Coll Coll PRES VOTE 2000 Degree Degree Lib Mod Con Gore Bush

Castor 40% 42% 59% 50% 19% 74% 16% Martinez 42 46 25 37 64 13 72 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - - - - 1 - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 2 - 1 3 1 1 DK/NA 16 10 17 12 14 12 11

18-34 35-49 50-64 65+ Wht Blk Hisp

Castor 37% 41% 39% 48% 37% 65% 34% Martinez 38 45 45 41 47 15 51 SMONE ELSE(VOL) - 1 - - 1 - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 1 3 1 1 1 3 DK/NA 23 12 13 11 14 19 11

Annual hshold income <30 30-50 50-100 >100K

Castor 48% 42% 37% 37% Martinez 34 43 48 52 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 - - - WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 2 2 2 DK/NA 16 13 13 9



6. Is your opinion of George W. Bush favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Favorable 43% 79% 17% 35% 45% 42% 51% Unfavorable 36 6 64 37 35 36 32 Mixed 17 13 16 23 16 18 14 Hvn't hrd enough 3 1 3 4 2 3 2 REFUSED 1 - 1 1 1 1 2



7. Is your opinion of John Kerry favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Favorable 36% 6% 67% 32% 32% 39% 27% Unfavorable 35 68 9 31 37 33 48 Mixed 23 22 18 31 25 22 19 Hvn't hrd enough 4 3 5 4 4 4 3 REFUSED 2 1 1 2 2 1 3



8. Is your opinion of Betty Castor favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about her?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Favorable 27% 11% 47% 23% 26% 28% 27% Unfavorable 16 28 4 17 19 14 23 Mixed 20 19 19 21 18 21 17 Hvn't hrd enough 35 39 30 38 35 35 29 REFUSED 2 2 1 - 2 1 3



9. Is your opinion of Mel Martinez favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Favorable 30% 53% 14% 24% 33% 27% 35% Unfavorable 21 8 34 22 21 21 23 Mixed 19 16 17 27 20 18 18 Hvn't hrd enough 29 23 35 27 25 32 24 REFUSED 1 - 1 - 1 1 1



10. If you had to choose, which of the following issues will be most important to your vote for president -- the situation in Iraq, the economy, terrorism or health care?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Iraq 18% 16% 21% 19% 17% 20% 19% Economy 28 18 36 30 33 23 29 Terrorism 26 46 10 21 25 26 30 Health care 22 14 28 23 18 26 13 DK/NA 6 5 4 8 6 6 8



11. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job on health care, -- George W. Bush or John Kerry?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Bush 39% 74% 10% 31% 40% 37% 46% Kerry 54 18 86 59 54 54 45 DK/NA 8 8 3 10 6 9 9



12. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job on the economy, -- George W. Bush or John Kerry?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Bush 45% 85% 14% 38% 47% 43% 56% Kerry 49 11 82 54 47 50 38 DK/NA 6 4 4 8 6 7 6



13. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job on the situation in Iraq, -- George W. Bush or John Kerry?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Bush 52% 90% 21% 46% 53% 50% 61% Kerry 41 7 71 44 41 41 32 DK/NA 8 3 8 9 6 9 6



14. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job on terrorism, -- George W. Bush or John Kerry?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Bush 56% 91% 26% 55% 59% 54% 62% Kerry 35 6 66 36 32 38 28 DK/NA 8 3 8 10 9 8 10



15. Regardless of how you intend to vote, which candidate would you say acts more like a leader - John Kerry or George W. Bush?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Kerry 43% 6% 75% 47% 40% 44% 33% Bush 51 91 19 44 54 48 61 DK/NA 6 2 6 9 6 7 7



16. Regardless of how you intend to vote, which candidate would you say has done a better job making it clear what he would do if he were elected president - John Kerry or George W. Bush?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Kerry 40% 7% 72% 39% 38% 42% 31% Bush 50 86 20 49 52 49 58 DK/NA 10 7 8 12 10 9 11



17. How important were the Presidential debates to you in deciding how to vote for president - Very important, somewhat important, not too important, or not important at all?
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Very important 33% 20% 48% 33% 29% 37% 20% Somewhat 33 33 32 36 34 33 33 Not too 15 18 11 12 18 12 22 Not at all 18 28 9 18 19 17 24 DK/NA 1 1 - - - 1 1



18. Do you think going to war with Iraq was the right thing for the United States to do or the wrong thing?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Right thing 48% 82% 22% 42% 49% 47% 57% Wrong thing 45 13 72 49 46 45 37 DK/NA 7 5 5 8 5 8 5



19. Are you planning to vote in the 2004 presidential election?

                        Tot


Yes 98% No 1 DK/NA 1



20. (If 'yes' q19)How confident are you that your vote in the 2004 presidential election in Florida will be counted correctly - very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident or not confident at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Veteran


Very confident 52% 73% 35% 48% 52% 51% 61% Somewhat confident 30 18 44 28 28 33 21 Not too confident 13 5 16 16 13 12 13 Not confident at all 3 1 4 5 4 3 4 DK/NA 2 2 1 2 3 1 2

Wht Blk Hisp

Very confident 57% 23% 44% Somewhat confident 29 42 32 Not too confident 9 27 17 Not confident at all 4 6 2 DK/NA 2 1 5