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Poll: Sen. Marco Rubio controversy draws mixed reaction among Florida voters

Looking for evidence of any potential political fallout from the media firestorm that erupted last month over whether Sen. Marco Rubio exaggerated his parents move from Cuba to America during the 1950's?

The reaction from Florida voters is mixed at best, according to a new poll this week by Suffolk University/WSVN-Miami 7News.

Here's the question pollsters asked 800 Florida voters and the results:

Q27. Marco Rubio's Senate website says his parents came to America following Fidel Castro's 1959 takeover. But media reports last week revealed they came to the U.S. three years earlier, before Castro was in Cuba. Marco Rubio says his parents were exiled from Cuba in 1961 when they tried to return. Do you think Marco Rubio exaggerated his story or did he tell the truth? 

Exaggerated his story: 41 percent

Told the truth: 26 percent

Undecided: 33 percent

But the same poll also found Rubio was well-liked in Florida. Forty-one percent gave the Cuban-American senator a favorable rating compared with 31 percent unfavorable and 22 percent undecided or with no opinion. The rest had not even heard of Rubio.

The poll also found that Rubio would be a political asset on the Republican presidential ticket as vice-president. Forty-six percent said they would vote for the GOP team as opposed to 41 percent for Obama-Biden.

The statewide survey was done in partnership with WSVN-Miami, 7NEWS, and has a margin of error margin of +/- 3.5 percent. Polled were 800 Florida voters between Oct. 26-30.

Rubio came under fire for incorrectly linking his parents to the Cubans who fled Fidel Castro beginning in 1959. He insisted they are exiles nonetheless, and angrily denounced the suggestion he misled for political gain.

When the error was documented by The Washington Post and the St. Petersburg Times, the news partner of the Miami Herald, Rubio's staff corrected the senator's website to note that his parents came to the United States in 1956 -- nearly three years before Castro took power.



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Ron Cox

Mr. Rubio,

I am independent however if the Republican Party cannot...will not enforce our current immigration laws the majority of the US citizens will vote Democrat. NO ONE cuts to the front of the line. Hispanics do not get preferential treatment over any other immigrant period!! I interned under a DR from Pakistan who was so proud after he legally immigrated to the US. And I am proud to have had him as my mentor. He DESERVED citizenship! Not so for Hispanics for Hispanics sake!! You’re attempting to use your name to obtain votes!

Eaton Doolittle

I am about Rubio's age.
My parents told me that they met at a dance in Norfolk Virginia, fell in love, and moved to the state where I was born.
I took what they told me at face value and have not done any fact checking on that story of what happened before I was born.
The story that the Washington Post put out, has absolutely nothing to do with Rubio's ideas or service to his fellow man.

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