Two new polls released this week place Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson in a tough spot.
Nelson, who is up for reelection in 2018 in a state that Donald Trump won, could go head to head against Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott in an attempt to win another term in office.
However, a St. Leo University poll, showed Scott with 34.4 percent support — just 4.3 percent behind Nelson — a number within the poll’s 4.5 percent margin of error, Sunshine State News reported.
Scott, an early supporter of President Trump’s campaign, is being urged by the president to run against Nelson. Florida political insiders tell The Tampa Bay Times Trump’s support on the campaign trail will be key for the governor.
Additionally, Nelson must contend with another likely ad campaign against him if he refuses to support Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch and joins his fellow Democrats’ filibuster of the Colorado judge. Such a move could alienate him from his constituents.
Another St. Leo University poll released this week shows that a majority of Floridians want to see Gorsuch confirmed.
According to the survey, 30 percent say they strongly support the Gorsuch nomination, while 24 percent somewhat support it. Less than 25 percent of those polled oppose his nomination. Twenty-one percent were unsure about it.
The poll also revealed a majority of Floridians opposed filibustering Gorsuch, with 45 percent of those in state against it, while 35 percent support the filibuster and 20 percent are unsure.
“The public’s understanding of techniques like the filibuster is limited, so voters will tend to fall back on partisan loyalties when answering this question,” Frank Orlando, director of the Saint Leo University Polling Institute said. “That being said, results show that the Democrats have a lot of work to do in terms of messaging if they are going to sway public opinion on this issue.”