Democratic trend in Florida? Two new polls show Gillum, Nelson ahead

Democratic governor nominee Andrew Gillum (left) and Sen. Bill Nelson lead their respective races in new Florida polls that differ on the size of their leads. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post)

Two polls released this week show Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Democratic governor nominee Andrew Gillum leading their nationally watched Florida races.

An NBC/Marist poll released late Tuesday shows the Democrats holding narrow leads in both races while results released by Quinnipiac University show a 7-point advantage for Nelson over Republican Gov. Rick Scott in the Senate race and a 9-point lead for Gillum over Republican Ron DeSantis in the governor’s race.

The NBC/Marist poll, conducted Sept. 16-20 with a 4.7 percent margin of error, gives Nelson a 48-to-45 percent lead over Republican Gov. Rick Scott in the Senate race and shows Gillum holding a 48-to-43 percent lead over Republican Ron DeSantis in the governor’s race.

Quinnipiac released Senate results Tuesday showing Nelson with a 53-to-46 percent lead over Scott — a result out of line with other polls released in the last month and deemed “absurd and not even close to accurate” by Scott pollster Wes Anderson.

Quinnipiac today released more results of its Sept. 20-24 survey, this time showing Gillum opening up a 54-to-45 percent lead over DeSantis in the governor’s race. The Quinnipiac surveys, conducted Sept. 20-24, have a 4 percent margin of error.

The polls also paint different pictures of Florida voter attitudes toward President Donald Trump. In the NBC/Marist poll, 46 percent of likely voters approve of Trump’s job performance and 48 percent disapprove — essentially a tie given the poll’s margin of error. Quinnipiac, however, found 44 percent approval and 54 percent disapproval for Trump among likely Florida voters.