May 25, 2006 - Voters Narrowly Back Oil Drilling 100 Miles Offshore Quinnipiac University Florida Poll Finds; Harris Gets Just 37 Percent In GOP Senate Primary
By a narrow 51 - 42 percent margin, with 7 percent undecided, Florida voters support lifting the ban on oil drilling in the Gulf Coast 100 miles from the Florida shore, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Rising gas prices leave 39 percent of Florida voters more likely to support this step, with 16 percent less likely and 43 percent who say rising prices don't affect their decision.

Florida voters oppose 55 - 36 percent allowing natural gas drilling nine miles from the coast, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

Asked how much they blame different parties for rising gas prices:
  • 88 percent of Florida voters give oil companies "a great deal" or "some" of the blame;
  • 80 percent give oil producing countries "a great deal" or "some" of the blame;
  • 65 percent blame normal supply and demand;
  • 62 percent give President George W. Bush "a great deal" or "some" of the blame;
  • 54 percent blame Americans who drive vehicles that use a lot of gas.
Florida voters are almost evenly divided, 48 - 45 percent, on whether they support or oppose construction of a new nuclear power plant in the state. But voters oppose 60 - 36 percent building a nuclear plant in the city or town where they live.

"The rising price of energy has changed the attitudes of many Florida voters. Higher pump prices have made 39 percent of them more likely to support offshore drilling in some form, and construction of nuclear power plants in their state, but not their neighborhoods," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

By a 49 - 23 percent margin, voters say the Democratic Party would do a better job handling gasoline prices. Only 57 percent of Republicans think their party would do a better job.

U.S. Senate Race

In the U.S. Senate race, Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson leads U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris, his likely Republican challenger, 58 - 25 percent. This compares to a 56 - 27 percent Nelson lead in an April 20 Quinnipiac University poll.

In this latest survey, Democrats back Nelson 83 - 6 percent, while Republicans back Harris 53 - 28 percent and independent voters go with the Democrat 57 - 22 percent.

Nelson gets a 37 - 10 percent favorability, with 18 percent mixed and 33 percent who haven't heard enough to form an opinion. Harris gets a negative 20 - 39 percent favorability, with 16 percent mixed and 24 percent who haven't formed an opinion.

Harris is the choice of 37 percent of Florida Republicans, followed by 13 percent for William McBride, with no other candidate above 4 percent and 40 percent undecided.

"Barring a reversal of historic proportions, Sen. Nelson seems to have little worries about keeping his job," Brown said.

"Although it is far too early to suggest that Congresswoman Harris faces problems in the Republican primary, the fact that six in 10 Republicans aren't supporting her in a primary against three unknowns is worth watching as the campaign develops."

From May 15 - 22, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,086 Florida registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points. The survey includes 424 Republican voters with a margin of error of +/- 4.8 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

3. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bill Nelson is handling his job as United States Senator?
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Approve 49% 43% 58% 45% 50% 48% Disapprove 23 27 22 21 27 20 DK/NA 27 30 20 35 22 32

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Approve 45% 52% 46% 51% 52% Disapprove 24 24 26 18 22 DK/NA 31 25 28 31 26

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

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Nov 15  Aug 31  Apr 20  Aug 12
                        2006    2006    2006    2005    2005    2006*   2004


Approve 49 50 49 49 49 50 42 Disapprove 23 19 20 18 20 19 18 DK/NA 27 30 32 33 30 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     Men     Wom


Approve 41% 60% 28% 36% 42% 40% Disapprove 32 19 44 33 34 30 DK/NA 28 22 28 31 24 31

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Approve 39% 42% 42% 42% 39% Disapprove 25 31 35 32 34 DK/NA 37 27 23 27 27

TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Mel Martinez is handling his job as United States Senator?(* - also hit 41% on 11/15/2005)

                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Nov 15  Aug 31  Feb 24  May 25
                        2006    2006    2006    2005    2005    2006    2006 * 


Approve 41 43 46 41 45 46 41 Disapprove 32 31 30 29 29 30 32 DK/NA 28 26 25 29 26 25 28



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     Men     Wom


Favorable 37% 31% 42% 38% 38% 37% Unfavorable 10 17 5 9 14 7 Mixed 18 16 20 18 16 19 Hvn't hrd enough 33 34 33 32 30 35 REFUSED 2 2 1 3 2 2

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Favorable 30% 42% 39% 28% 40% Unfavorable 13 10 11 10 8 Mixed 18 17 20 20 17 Hvn't hrd enough 38 29 29 40 33 REFUSED 2 1 1 3 3

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

                        May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2006    2005


Favorable 37 40 37 35 Unfavorable 10 10 11 8 Mixed 18 19 17 24 Hvn't hrd enough 33 31 34 31 REFUSED 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     Men     Wom


Favorable 20% 33% 12% 18% 21% 19% Unfavorable 39 18 54 40 40 38 Mixed 16 24 10 16 18 15 Hvn't hrd enough 24 24 24 26 21 27 REFUSED 1 1 - 1 - 1

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Favorable 18% 21% 17% 29% 20% Unfavorable 31 44 37 32 44 Mixed 15 23 18 14 12 Hvn't hrd enough 36 12 27 26 22 REFUSED - - 1 - 1



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

                        May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2006    2005


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



16. 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     Men     Wom


Nelson 58% 28% 83% 57% 55% 61% Harris 25 53 6 22 28 22 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 1 1 1 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 2 4 1 1 2 2 DK/NA 14 15 9 18 14 14

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Nelson 52% 60% 55% 49% 66% Harris 27 26 30 35 16 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 2 - 1 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 1 2 2 - 3 DK/NA 19 11 13 14 15

TREND: If the 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?

                        May 25  Apr 20  Feb 24  Nov 15  Aug 31  Jun 29
                        2006    2006    2006    2005    2005    2005


Nelson 58 56 53 55 57 50 Harris 25 27 31 31 33 38 SMONE ELSE 1 1 1 1 - 1 WLDN'T VOTE 2 2 1 1 1 1 DK/NA 14 14 14 12 9 10



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

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Yes/Re-elected 48% 31% 65% 45% 51% 45% No/Someone else 31 44 17 34 34 28 DK/NA 21 25 18 21 15 27

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Yes/Re-elected 43% 48% 46% 44% 54% No/Someone else 33 30 36 32 24 DK/NA 24 21 18 24 22

TREND: Bill Nelson will be up for re-election in 2006. Would you like to see Bill Nelson re-elected Senator, or would you rather see someone else elected Senator?

                                                                Highest Lowest
                        May 25  Apr 20  Nov 15  Aug 31  Jun 29  Apr 20  Apr 14
                        2006    2006    2005    2005    2005    2006    2005


Re-elected 48 44 37 38 38 44 35 Smone Else 31 32 33 35 37 32 37 DK/NA 21 23 29 27 25 23 28



18. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would win the Senate election - Bill Nelson or Katherine Harris?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Nelson 68% 60% 74% 69% 72% 64% Harris 18 25 11 16 16 19 DK/NA 15 14 14 16 12 17

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Nelson 66% 70% 73% 49% 69% Harris 18 20 18 34 10 DK/NA 17 10 9 17 21

TREND: Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would win the Senate election - Bill Nelson or Katherine Harris?

                        May 25  Apr 20  Aug 31
                        2006    2006    2005


Nelson 68 70 56 Harris 18 16 24 DK/NA 15 15 20



26. The federal government is considering a proposal to allow oil and natural gas drilling in large sections of the Eastern Gulf of Mexico 100 miles from the Florida coast that are currently off limits. - Do you support or oppose this proposal?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 51% 76% 37% 45% 61% 43% Oppose 42 19 56 47 35 49 DK/NA 7 5 7 8 4 9

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Support 50% 51% 56% 56% 46% Oppose 44 45 33 40 49 DK/NA 7 4 11 4 5



27. How has the rising price of gasoline and other forms of energy affected your views on offshore drilling? Has it made you more likely to support drilling 100 miles off the Florida coast, less likely, or hasn't it made a difference?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


More likely 39% 54% 32% 32% 42% 36% Less likely 16 6 20 17 11 20 Hasn't made a dif 43 37 44 49 45 41 DK/NA 3 3 4 2 2 4

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

More likely 33% 41% 39% 47% 37% Less likely 15 17 16 9 17 Hasn't made a dif 49 39 42 38 43 DK/NA 3 3 3 6 3



28. The federal government is also considering a proposal to allow just natural gas drilling as close as 9 miles from the Florida coast. Do you support or oppose this proposal?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 36% 52% 27% 34% 48% 26% Oppose 55 38 64 60 48 61 DK/NA 9 11 9 6 5 13

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Support 33% 36% 38% 40% 34% Oppose 58 57 51 48 57 DK/NA 9 7 11 12 9



29. How has the rising price of gasoline and other forms of energy affected your views on natural gas offshore drilling? Has it made you more likely to support drilling for natural gas as close as 9 miles off the Florida coast, less likely, or hasn't it made a difference?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


More likely 26% 35% 25% 22% 32% 22% Less likely 22 16 27 21 17 26 Hasn't made a dif 47 45 43 55 49 45 DK/NA 5 4 6 2 3 6

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

More likely 22% 26% 27% 32% 28% Less likely 24 21 20 12 26 Hasn't made a dif 50 50 49 49 41 DK/NA 5 3 4 6 5



30. Would you support or oppose the construction of a new nuclear power plant in Florida?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 48% 59% 38% 49% 69% 31% Oppose 45 35 53 45 26 61 DK/NA 7 6 8 6 5 8

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Support 45% 54% 52% 51% 41% Oppose 48 41 41 42 51 DK/NA 7 5 7 7 8



31. Would you support or oppose the construction of a new nuclear power plant in your city or town?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Support 36% 44% 27% 38% 55% 19% Oppose 60 51 69 58 40 77 DK/NA 4 5 4 4 5 4

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Support 34% 42% 41% 36% 28% Oppose 61 55 51 61 70 DK/NA 5 3 7 3 2



32. How has the rising price of gasoline and other forms of energy affected your views on nuclear power? Has it made you more likely to support construction of a new nuclear power plant in Florida, less likely, or hasn't it made a difference?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


More likely 26% 36% 23% 20% 36% 18% Less likely 20 13 24 19 13 26 Hasn't made a dif 51 48 47 58 49 53 DK/NA 4 2 5 2 3 4

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

More likely 20% 28% 28% 28% 26% Less likely 26 20 15 12 22 Hasn't made a dif 53 48 52 54 49 DK/NA 1 4 5 7 3



33. (INTRO TO Q33-Q37 ROTATED)How much do you blame each of the following for the recent increase in gasoline prices: a great deal, some, not much or not at all. How much do you blame - oil producing countries for the recent increase in gasoline prices: A great deal, some, not much, or not at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


A great deal 49% 53% 52% 42% 45% 52% Some 31 29 31 33 32 30 Not much 9 9 6 11 11 7 Not at all 10 5 9 13 11 9 DK/NA 2 3 2 1 2 2

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

A great deal 45% 46% 49% 47% 53% Some 28 37 31 37 26 Not much 12 8 10 7 8 Not at all 12 8 8 7 12 DK/NA 2 1 3 3 2



34. How much do you blame - oil companies for the recent increase in gasoline prices: A great deal, some, not much, or not at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


A great deal 66% 58% 77% 65% 59% 72% Some 22 25 17 23 25 20 Not much 5 8 2 7 7 4 Not at all 5 8 2 6 8 3 DK/NA 2 1 2 - 1 2

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

A great deal 67% 62% 61% 59% 75% Some 21 23 27 26 16 Not much 6 8 4 9 3 Not at all 6 7 5 4 3 DK/NA - - 3 3 2



35. How much do you blame - President Bush for the recent increase in gasoline prices: A great deal, some, not much, or not at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


A great deal 40% 10% 62% 41% 33% 45% Some 22 21 25 20 23 22 Not much 13 21 5 17 14 13 Not at all 23 47 7 21 29 19 DK/NA 1 - 1 - 1 1

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

A great deal 40% 33% 36% 19% 54% Some 21 26 23 28 18 Not much 14 11 15 20 10 Not at all 24 28 24 30 18 DK/NA 1 1 1 2 -



36. How much do you blame - Americans who drive vehicles that use a lot of gasoline for the recent increase in gasoline prices: A great deal, some, not much, or not at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


A great deal 25% 21% 29% 23% 26% 25% Some 29 28 29 29 28 29 Not much 19 21 15 22 21 17 Not at all 26 29 24 25 24 27 DK/NA 1 1 3 - 1 1

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

A great deal 27% 27% 23% 19% 27% Some 30 29 30 31 26 Not much 17 20 18 20 19 Not at all 25 25 26 25 26 DK/NA 1 - 2 5 1



37. How much do you blame normal supply and demand pressures for the recent increase in gasoline prices: A great deal, some, not much, or not at all?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


A great deal 33% 36% 34% 28% 36% 30% Some 32 32 28 38 30 33 Not much 17 16 18 18 16 18 Not at all 15 15 14 16 16 15 DK/NA 3 2 6 1 3 4

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

A great deal 30% 29% 33% 36% 35% Some 33 36 30 34 28 Not much 19 19 18 10 16 Not at all 15 14 14 16 17 DK/NA 3 2 4 4 3

38. Regardless of how you usually vote, do you think the Republican Party or the Democratic Party would do a better job handling gasoline prices?

                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom


Republican 23% 57% 3% 14% 25% 20% Democratic 49 13 83 44 45 53 BOTH(VOL) 2 3 1 2 2 1 NEITHER(VOL) 17 17 8 25 22 12 DK/NA 10 10 6 15 6 13

North/ PnHnd Bay Cntrl SthW SthE

Republican 21% 23% 28% 31% 16% Democratic 45 50 42 38 61 BOTH(VOL) 3 2 3 1 - NEITHER(VOL) 18 17 16 17 17 DK/NA 14 8 11 14 6



43. (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


Harris 37% Collins 4 Monroe 2 McBride 13 SMONE ELSE(VOL) 1 WLDN'T VOTE(VOL) 3 DK/NA 40