FAU poll: immigration, economy on top of voter minds but priorities vary by party

by | Apr 18, 2024

A Florida Atlantic University poll finds that immigration and the economy are the main concerns for Florida voters ahead of the November elections, with variances in priority based on party affiliation, age, and other demographic factors.

A poll published on Thursday by Florida Atlantic University (FAU) shows immigration and the economy are the primary concerns for Florida voters as they prepare for the November elections, though these priorities differ between Republicans and Democrats.

According to the findings, 25 percent of respondents identify immigration as their top issue, closely followed by the economy at 23 percent. Issues such as the cost of living and abortion follow, noted by 15 percent and 13 percent of the electorate, respectively.

“Partisan differences on immigration and abortion reflect campaign priorities not only of their presidential nominees, but Republican state officials in Florida as well.” stated Dr. Aaron Veenstra, associate professor of journalism at FAU.

The poll also found that older voters are more likely to align closely with their party’s traditional stance on issues like immigration and abortion. In contrast, those who did not vote in 2020 emphasize the economy and cost of living as their main concerns. Demographics such as race and education level also influence voter priorities. Black and Hispanic voters mainly prioritized the economy. Among white voters, those with college degrees are more concerned with immigration, while non-college-educated white voters placed nearly equal importance on immigration and the economy.

“Although partisans put significant value on these issues at the center of campaign strategy, those who didn’t vote in 2020 ranked them much lower compared with economic concerns and the cost of living in Florida, ” said Veenstra.

The FAU poll was conducted from Monday, April 15 to Wednesday, April 17, among a sample of 865 adults, 18 years of age or older, living in Florida. The survey was conducted using text message recruitment and IVR to complete the survey. The margin of error for the poll is +/- 3.3 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.

Thursday’s poll results represent a shift in voter priorities compared to January, when an Associated Industries of Florida (AIF) query identified inflation and Florida’s insurance crisis are the top concerns as voters head into this year’s general elections.

According to the AIF poll, 23 percent of Florida voters identified inflation and lowering the cost of living as their primary concern, closely followed by 21 percent who are worried about the insurance crisis. Other key issues include illegal immigration (14 percent), housing costs (10 percent), and abortion access (10 percent).


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