Recent polling has all been bad news for Marco Rubio (R-FL). A new PPP poll found Rubio has dropped substantially in their national Republican primary poll. He went from first place to sixth over the past several months. From PPP:
PPP’s newest look at the Republican field for 2016 finds some big changes from our previous polling. Marco Rubio, who had led all of our polling since December, has dropped all the way to 6th place. Rand Paul now has the lead nationally, to go along with the leads he posted in our most recent Iowa and New Hampshire polls. And Ted Cruz has already hit double digits.
The numbers are: Paul 16, Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, and Paul Ryan each at 13, Cruz at 12, Rubio at 10, Rick Santorum and Bobby Jindal at 4, and Susana Martinez at 2. Cruz has proven to be such a darling to the far right that he actually already leads among ‘very conservative’ voters with 20% to 18% for Paul and 17% for Ryan. Christie gets 24% with ‘moderate’ identifying Republicans but doesn’t do better overall because he’s at just 7% with ‘very conservative’ ones.
Similarly, the new NBC/WSJ poll also indicates Rubio support among the Republican base has noticably weakened. It found that the percentage of people who have a “very positive” opinion of him dropped to only 7 percent from 12 percent back in April. His net favorable rating is now 23/20 while it was 28/16 back in April.
Polling three years out has almost no impact on the 2016 election, but it can have a real impact on the current policy fights in Washington. Rubio was the Republican face of immigration reform and it now seems that a segment of the Republican base is punishing him for it.
For many House Republicans their only real election concern is a Republican primary at a time when being a mostly reliable conservative is still not enough to discourage all challenger. Rubio’s sagging poll numbers could make House Republicans even less inclined to follow his lead by supporting the Senate immigration bill.