Marco Rubio dismisses UNF ’email poll’ showing him losing to Val Demings

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio says he doesn’t pay attention to polls, but he clearly does enough to offer a takedown of at least one survey.

The Senator appeared on Tuesday’s Fox and Friends when he was asked about a survey from the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab that was released last week, showing him 4 points behind presumptive Democratic nominee U.S. Rep. Val Demings in November.

“Well, honestly after the last two years, we should have learned our lesson not to listen to the polls. I don’t listen, there’s a poll that came out two days later that said I was up by 11,” Rubio said, referring to a survey from the Center Street PAC.

“So I just don’t pay attention to those things, particularly the North Florida poll, which was an email poll. They emailed people,” Rubio said, going on to suggest that polling would be more meaningful as the General Election approached.

UNF PORL polling director Dr. Michael Binder acknowledged that it was an email poll, albeit one that should concern Rubio given his lag behind Gov. Ron DeSantis in the same survey.

“In one sense he’s right in that our poll was of registered voters, and we all know Republicans (for a variety of reasons) turnout better in November. So am I saying Demings would win by 4 right now if we ran the election today, no. But, this race is going to be close,” Binder said.

“He’s also right, we did email people. But in that same poll we had Ron DeSantis up 7 and 8 points on his potential Democratic challengers. That’s the real eye opener here, two Republicans for statewide offices running 11 or 12 points apart in the same poll.”

The UNF survey showed Demings with 48% support and Rubio with 44%, with Demings taking 94% support from Democrats, stronger than Rubio’s 89% with Democrats. No-party voters polled preferred Demings over Rubio, 46% to 36%.

While Rubio edged Demings with male voters, with 48% support compared to 45% for the challenger, he lagged with women. Demings was the preference of 50% of female voters, 10 points above Rubio.

Rubio is strongest in the UNF poll with White voters, with 52% preferring him over Demings, who drew 41% support. He also leads with Hispanic voters, 48% to 42%.

Black voters resoundingly prefer Demings, meanwhile, with just 2% saying they’d vote for Rubio in the UNF survey.

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