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Poll: 72% Of Florida Voters Think Social Distancing Should Continue Into May

Surfers were among those walking along Jacksonville Beach on Saturday, April 18, following its limited reopening.

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ stay-at-home order is currently scheduled to expire at the end of the month, but most Florida voters surveyed by Quinnipiac University believe social distancing rules should not be loosened yet.

"Nearly three quarters of Floridians are not ready to drop their guard," said Quinnipiac University polling analyst Tim Malloy in a news release.

The poll released this week found 72% of surveyed registered Florida voters said the state should not loosen social distancing rules by the end of April.

Related: Local, State, And National Coronavirus Coverage

About three quarters of those surveyed, 76%, said that the state's economy should only reopen when public health officials deem it safe, compared to 17% who said it should reopen even if public health officials warn against it.

Half of voters in the poll approved of the way DeSantis is handling the state’s coronavirus response, 41% disapprove, and the remainder did not express an opinion.

Republicans gave DeSantis an 81% approval rating. Democrats saw things differently, with 64% disapproving of his handling of the crisis.

Sixty-one percent of those surveyed said the governor could have responded sooner to the coronavirus outbreak, while 34% said he responded quickly enough.

A majority of voters, 52%, disapproved of the governor’s decision to exempt religious services from Florida’s stay-at-home order.

The survey of 1,385 self-identified Florida registered voters was done between April 16 – 20, with a margin of error of  +/- 2.6 percentage points, according to Quinnipiac University.

The full poll results, which include questions about President Donald Trump’s handling of the pandemic and the upcoming presidential election is available on Quinnipiac University’s website.

Contact reporter Cyd Hoskinson at, 904-358-6351 and on Twitter at @cydwjctnews.

Bill joined WJCT News in September of 2017 from The Florida Times-Union, where he served in a variety of multimedia journalism positions.