July 27, 2006 - Nelson Widens Lead Over Harris In Senate Race, Quinnipiac University Florida Poll Finds; Harris Lead In GOP Primary Remains Soft
Sen. Bill Nelson's lead over U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris has ballooned to 37 points, and while her margin among likely Republican primary voters is 19 points, the large number of undecided voters keeps that race potentially competitive, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Nelson stretched his lead over Harris in a general election trial heat for the U.S. Senate to 61 - 24 percent, up from 59 - 26 percent in a June 30 poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University.

As in June, Nelson's margin over Republican candidate William McBride is slightly narrower, 57 - 23 percent, but still overwhelming. Nelson defeats the other two GOP hopefuls, Peter Monroe and LeRoy Collins Jr., by identical 59 - 19 percent margins.

Among likely Republican primary voters, including leaners, Rep. Harris gets support from 40 percent, with McBride at 21 percent, Collins at 6 percent and Monroe at 3 percent. Another 30 percent are undecided and 54 percent of those who support Harris say they could change their mind. Among registered Republicans, Harris gets 35 percent to McBride's 16 percent, with 5 percent for Collins and 3 percent for Monroe.

"In most cases, a 19-point lead six weeks before the primary would indicate that the race was virtually over. But the special circumstances of the Republican Senate primary leave the door open more than it might otherwise appear," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"History tells us that undecided voters tend not to vote for incumbents. Mostly, they either vote for another candidate or don't vote. In the Republican Senate primary, Rep. Harris' widespread name recognition puts her in the position of being the de facto incumbent. With almost a third of likely voters undecided, she has not yet completed the sale," Brown added.

Republican primary voters have a mixed opinion of Rep. Harris, with 30 percent viewing her favorably and 26 percent unfavorably. By comparison, Republican candidates for governor Charlie Crist and Tom Gallagher have favorable-to-unfavorable ratings of 57 - 6 percent and 44 - 11 percent respectively among likely GOP primary voters.

"As far as the November election, it would be hard to come up with a reasonable scenario in which Sen. Nelson has anything to worry about," Brown said.


President Bush's Approval


The Quinnipiac University poll also found that President George W. Bush's approval rating among Florida voters remains near its all-time low, with a 58 - 39 percent disapproval rating, virtually unchanged from 60 - 38 percent June 29.

From July 19 - 24, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,541 Florida registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.5 percentage points. The survey includes 340 Republican likely primary voters, with a margin of error of +/- 5.3 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.

3. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bill Nelson is handling his job as United States Senator?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Approve 44% 37% 49% 49% 45% 40% 42% Disapprove 25 34 19 23 24 35 20 DK/NA 30 29 32 28 30 25 39

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Approve 42% 48% 40% 52% 44% 45% 44% Disapprove 29 25 30 25 20 31 20 DK/NA 29 27 30 23 36 24 36

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bill Nelson is handling his job as United States Senator? (*Also 50% on 4/14/05 & 2/25/05)

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Apr 20  Aug 12
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2006*   2004


Approve 44 45 49 50 49 50 42 Disapprove 25 23 23 19 20 19 18 DK/NA 30 32 27 30 32 30 40



4. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Mel Martinez is handling his job as United States Senator?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Approve 40% 55% 32% 35% 39% 48% 36% Disapprove 33 21 39 39 33 34 30 DK/NA 27 24 28 26 27 19 34

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Approve 43% 35% 41% 42% 40% 39% 41% Disapprove 30 41 35 28 30 39 28 DK/NA 27 24 24 30 30 22 31

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Mel Martinez is handling his job as United States Senator?

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Feb 24  Jul 27
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2006 


Approve 40 42 41 43 46 46 40 Disapprove 33 31 32 31 30 30 33 DK/NA 27 28 28 26 25 25 27



5. Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as President?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Approve 39% 78% 12% 32% 43% 19% 30% Disapprove 58 18 86 64 54 79 66 DK/NA 3 4 2 4 4 2 3

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Approve 44% 36% 47% 44% 27% 42% 35% Disapprove 53 60 49 52 70 54 61 DK/NA 2 4 4 4 3 4 3

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as President?

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Jul 27  Jun 29  May 24  Apr 20  Feb 24  Sep 23  Apr 20
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2004    2006  


Approve 39 38 36 35 46 50 35 Disapprove 58 60 60 60 50 47 60 DK/NA 3 3 3 5 4 3 5



14. Is your opinion of -- United States Senator Bill Nelson favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Favorable 40% 36% 43% 41% 41% 42% 32% Unfavorable 12 18 7 12 12 9 8 Mixed 19 21 18 19 20 19 16 Hvn't hrd enough 28 23 31 27 26 30 43 REFUSED 1 1 1 1 1 - 1

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Favorable 42% 37% 43% 45% 36% 43% 37% Unfavorable 14 11 14 10 9 17 8 Mixed 17 20 17 19 22 18 20 Hvn't hrd enough 25 30 23 24 33 21 33 REFUSED 2 1 2 1 - 1 1

TREND: Is your opinion of United States Senator Bill Nelson favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2005


Favorable 40 40 37 40 37 35 Unfavorable 12 11 10 10 11 8 Mixed 19 20 18 19 17 24 Hvn't hrd enough 28 29 33 31 34 31 REFUSED 1 1 2 1 2 1



15. Is your opinion of -- Congresswoman Katherine Harris favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about her?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Favorable 18% 28% 14% 13% 17% 23% 22% Unfavorable 39 20 50 48 42 27 29 Mixed 16 25 9 17 17 12 16 Hvn't hrd enough 25 27 26 22 23 36 33 REFUSED 1 1 1 - 1 1 -

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Favorable 24% 15% 18% 15% 18% 21% 16% Unfavorable 29 50 36 46 40 41 38 Mixed 14 18 19 15 13 13 19 Hvn't hrd enough 32 17 25 23 28 24 26 REFUSED 1 - 1 1 1 1 1

Reg Likely Rep Rep Primary Vtrs

Favorable 25% 30% Unfavorable 23 26 Mixed 25 26 Hvn't hrd enough 26 18 REFUSED - -

TREND: Is your opinion of Congresswoman Katherine Harris favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about her?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2005


Favorable 18 20 20 17 26 22 Unfavorable 39 34 39 37 27 30 Mixed 16 15 16 15 13 15 Hvn't hrd enough 25 29 24 30 32 32 REFUSED 1 1 1 - 1 1



16. Is your opinion of -- attorney William McBride favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Favorable 8% 9% 8% 9% 8% 12% 6% Unfavorable 6 5 6 7 6 5 9 Mixed 11 11 10 12 10 15 15 Hvn't hrd enough 74 75 75 72 76 68 70 REFUSED - - - - - - - North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Favorable 12% 8% 8% 7% 7% 9% 8% Unfavorable 4 9 4 7 7 8 4 Mixed 12 12 8 9 14 12 11 Hvn't hrd enough 71 71 79 75 72 70 77 REFUSED 1 - - 2 - - 1

Reg Likely Rep Rep Primary Vtrs

Favorable 9% 8% Unfavorable 5 7 Mixed 10 11 Hvn't hrd enough 76 74 REFUSED - -

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

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Favorable 8 11 Unfavorable 6 4 Mixed 11 12 Hvn't hrd enough 74 72 REFUSED - 1



17. Is your opinion of -- the son of former Governor LeRoy Collins, LeRoy Collins Jr., favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Favorable 4% 4% 6% 3% 4% 10% 3% Unfavorable 3 3 3 4 3 1 4 Mixed 6 8 5 3 5 5 9 Hvn't hrd enough 86 85 85 89 87 84 84 REFUSED 1 - 1 - 1 - -

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Favorable 8% 3% 4% 4% 2% 5% 3% Unfavorable 4 5 2 1 4 4 3 Mixed 7 6 7 2 5 6 6 Hvn't hrd enough 80 86 87 91 87 84 88 REFUSED 1 - - 2 1 1 -

Reg Likely Rep Rep Primary Vtrs

Favorable 4% 4% Unfavorable 3 5 Mixed 7 4 Hvn't hrd enough 86 87 REFUSED - -

TREND: Is your opinion of the son of former Governor LeRoy Collins, LeRoy Collins Jr., favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Favorable 4 5 Unfavorable 3 3 Mixed 6 5 Hvn't hrd enough 86 86 REFUSED 1 -



18. Is your opinion of -- developer Peter Monroe favorable, unfavorable, mixed, or haven't you heard enough about him?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Favorable 3% 3% 4% 2% 2% 9% 5% Unfavorable 6 6 6 7 6 4 4 Mixed 5 2 5 7 5 7 4 Hvn't hrd enough 85 87 85 83 87 78 86 REFUSED 1 1 - 1 1 1 -

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Favorable 7% 1% 1% 2% 4% 4% 2% Unfavorable 7 7 6 7 5 8 5 Mixed 4 6 5 3 5 4 6 Hvn't hrd enough 81 86 87 84 85 83 86 REFUSED 1 - - 4 1 1 1

Reg Likely Rep Rep Primary Vtrs

Favorable 3% 3% Unfavorable 7 9 Mixed 3 3 Hvn't hrd enough 86 84 REFUSED 1 2

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

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Favorable 3 3 Unfavorable 6 8 Mixed 5 6 Hvn't hrd enough 85 83 REFUSED 1 -



19. If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and Katherine Harris the Republican for whom would you vote?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Nelson 61% 31% 85% 66% 59% 81% 59% Harris 24 52 7 15 26 7 25 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 1 - 3 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 4 1 1 3 - 3 DK/NA 11 12 7 14 11 11 13

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Nelson 56% 61% 59% 53% 70% 61% 61% Harris 25 20 28 33 20 26 22 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 2 - 1 1 1 2 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 4 1 3 2 2 3 DK/NA 15 14 11 11 7 9 13

TREND: If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and Katherine Harris the Republican, for whom would you vote?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Nov 15  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2006    2005    2005


Nelson 61 59 58 56 53 55 57 Harris 24 26 25 27 31 31 33 SMONE ELSE 1 1 1 1 1 1 - WLDN'T VOTE 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 DK/NA 11 13 14 14 14 12 9



20. If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and William McBride the Republican for whom would you vote?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Nelson 57% 25% 83% 58% 55% 77% 54% McBride 23 58 4 10 25 10 26 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 1 - 2 1 1 2 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 2 1 2 2 - 2 DK/NA 17 14 11 27 18 13 17

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Nelson 53% 56% 54% 49% 65% 57% 57% McBride 27 20 26 29 18 26 21 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 3 1 1 - 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 2 - 2 2 1 2 DK/NA 16 20 18 19 14 14 20

TREND: If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and William McBride the Republican, for whom would you vote?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Nelson 57 56 McBride 23 25 SMONE ELSE 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE 2 1 DK/NA 17 17



21. If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and LeRoy Collins Jr. the Republican for whom would you vote?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Nelson 59% 28% 85% 59% 57% 79% 59% Collins 19 49 3 9 21 9 21 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 2 - 2 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 3 - 2 2 - 2 DK/NA 19 18 12 28 20 12 17

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Nelson 55% 62% 57% 52% 64% 61% 58% Collins 19 15 23 27 17 20 19 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 4 1 1 1 - 2 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 2 1 3 3 2 2 DK/NA 21 20 18 17 16 16 21

TREND: If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and LeRoy Collins Jr. the Republican, for whom would you vote?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Nelson 59 57 Collins, Jr. 19 20 SMONE ELSE 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE 2 2 DK/NA 19 21



22. If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today, and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and Peter Monroe the Republican for whom would you vote?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Nelson 59% 28% 85% 60% 57% 82% 60% Monroe 19 51 2 7 21 6 21 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 2 - 2 1 1 2 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 3 1 2 2 - 2 DK/NA 18 17 12 29 19 11 16

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Nelson 54% 60% 57% 51% 67% 62% 57% Monroe 22 14 23 28 15 19 19 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 3 1 1 - 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 3 1 3 3 2 3 DK/NA 19 22 18 19 14 15 20

TREND: If the 2006 election for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Bill Nelson the Democrat and Peter Monroe the Republican, for whom would you vote?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30
                        2006    2006


Nelson 59 58 Monroe 19 21 SMONE ELSE 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE 2 1 DK/NA 18 19



23. Would you like to see Bill Nelson re-elected Senator, or would you rather see someone else elected Senator?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Wht     Blk     Hisp


Yes/Re-elected 48% 27% 65% 53% 48% 61% 40% No/Someone else 29 47 18 22 29 24 26 DK/NA 23 26 17 25 23 16 34

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE Men Wom

Yes/Re-elected 45% 49% 45% 50% 51% 51% 45% No/Someone else 32 28 32 27 25 33 25 DK/NA 22 23 23 23 24 15 30

TREND: Would you like to see Bill Nelson re-elected Senator, or would you rather see someone else elected Senator?

                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25  Apr 20  Nov 15  Aug 31  Jun 29
                        2006    2006    2006    2006    2005    2005    2005


Re-elected 48 47 48 44 37 38 38 Smone Else 29 31 31 32 33 35 37 DK/NA 23 23 21 23 29 27 25

27. (If registered republican) If the 2006 Republican primary for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Katherine Harris, LeRoy Collins Jr., Peter Monroe and William McBride for whom would you vote? (If undecided q27a) As of today, do you lean more toward Harris, Collins Jr., Monroe or McBride? * This table includes Leaners.

                        Likely Rep
                        Primary Vtrs


Harris 40% Collins Jr. 6 Monroe 3 McBride 21 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 0 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) - DK/NA 30

27a. (If registered republican) If the 2006 Republican primary for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Katherine Harris LeRoy Collins Jr., Peter Monroe, and William McBride for whom would you vote?

                        Reg
                        Rep


Harris 35% Collins 5 Monroe 3 McBride 16 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 3 DK/NA 37

TREND: (If registered republican) If the 2006 Republican primary for United States Senator were being held today and the candidates were Katherine Harris, LeRoy Collins Jr., Peter Monroe and William McBride for whom would you vote?

                        REGISTERED REPUBLICANS
                        Jul 27  Jun 30  May 25
                        2006    2006    2006


Harris 35 35 37 Collins 5 3 4 Monroe 3 4 2 McBride 16 16 13 SMONE ELSE 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE 3 2 3 DK/NA 37 38 40

27b. (If candidate choice q27a) Is your mind made up, or do you think you might change your mind before the primary?

                        Reg     LIKELY REP PRIME VOTERS
                        Rep     Tot     Harris Vtrs


Made up 28% 33% 44% Might change 71 65 54 DK/NA 1 2 1