Poll: Rubio has commanding lead in Florida

A new poll shows Florida Senate hopeful Marco Rubio with a commanding lead in a three-way race as the candidate holds on to support from most Republicans and many independents.

The St. Petersburg Times/Miami Herald/Bay News 9 poll shows Rubio with a 15 point lead over Gov. Charlie Crist (I).

That breaks down to 41 percent of likely voters backing GOP nominee Rubio, 26 percent for Crist and 20 percent backing Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-Fla.). Forty-one percent of independent voters are breaking for Crist, compared to 21 percent for Rubio and 5 percent for Meek.

The telephone survey of 801 registered voters, including 577 likely voters, was conducted Oct. 15-19 by Ipsos for The St. Petersburg Times, Miami Herald, Bay News 9 and Central Florida News 13.

Among Democrats, Meek has 42 percent of likely voters compared to 36 percent for Crist.

Among Republicans, 70 percent back Rubio while just 17 percent go for Crist.