What are Gov. McCrory approval ratings?

Gov. Pat McCrory has been an active governor. He has made controversial statements such as the one he made about public higher education in North Carolina. He supported a bill to cuts benefits for unemployed workers, limiting both the duration of benefits and capping weekly benefits at $350. He has, so far, pretty much supported what the General Assembly is doing.

And, at this point at least, he has the support of a plurality of North Carolinians surveyed in the latest Elon University Poll — 42 percent said they approved of his job performance so far, 26 percent said they disapproved, and 32 percent said they didn’t know.

“Because the governor has held office for less than two months, it is not surprising that almost 32 percent of respondents said they were not sure whether they approved or disapproved of his performance,” Poll Director Ken Fernandez said.

As expected, it breaks down by party, too, with Republicans overwhelmingly approving his job performance, 61 percent, to only 9 percent disapproving. Democrats aren’t quite so lopsided — 26 percent approve his performance and 42 percent don’t.

That’s not unusual. McCrory has the reputation of a moderate Republican who works well with the “other side.” Most North Carolina Democrats tend to be moderate or a shade conservative. They don’t fit the traditional definition of liberal. That, however, could well change as the process of governing the state really gets going. He’s only been in office two months.

His support by men is strong, 46 percent approval to 24 percent disapproval. Women also like what he has done so far, but the support is a bit softer, 38 percent to 27 percent. That’s also not unusual. Females lean a bit more to the left than the males.

The “don’t knows” will start breaking apart and “taking sides” by our next poll in April. People are still taking a measure of the man that, outside of Charlotte, they don’t have much experience watching. (McCrory rose to fame as Charlotte mayor. This is his first statewide office.)

For the record, we didn’t ask residents their initial thoughts on Gov. Bev Perdue’s first few months. After a year in office, 47 percent of those surveyed disaproved of the job she was doing and 37 percent approved. About two years later, she announced she was not going to run for re-election.

— John Robinson

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