Category Archives: Uncategorized

Obama’s job performance in N.C.

President Obama’s job approval rate has squeaked up two percentage points, from 39% in February to 41% in April, according to the latest Elon University Poll. The increase is within the 3.7% margin of error so it’s a wash.

A year ago, his approval rating was close to 50%. It has dropped ever since. In November, it was 37%. In September, it was 38%.

Pretty much, thank the Affordable Care Act.

That said his approval rating is higher than Gov. Pat McCrory’s (35%), Sen. Kay Hagan’s (35%) and Sen. Richard Burr’s (34%). On the other side, his DISapproval rate of 49% is higher than McCrory’s (45%) and Burr’s (35%), and the same as Hagan’s.

Digging into the numbers:

Politics — 70% of Democrats approve of how he’s doing his job compared with 34% of Independents and just 4% of Republicans. The significant number, thought, is that in February, 81% of Democrats approved of his job performance. He’s not running for re-election, of course, but that doesn’t help the rest of the ticket.

Gender — 46% of women and 35% of men approve of his work. Since November, he has gained a bit of support among women, but it is within the 3% margin of error.

Race — 83% of African Americans give him a thumbs up, but only 29% of whites. Those numbers have been basically stable since last year.

Age — The 41-50 age group disapproves of the president the most — 58%.

If it’s any consolation – and I doubt it is – N.C. numbers are in line with the rest of the nation.

— John Robinson

Congress approval numbers

After our last poll in February, I asked, “Is it still news that people don’t like Congress?”

The answer then, as now, is no.

Then, 83% of registered voters in N.C. who responded said they disapproved of Congress. Only 8% approved. That’s essentially unchanged from November.

Now, 81% of registered voters who responded said they disapproved of Congress. Only 9% approved. Both are within the margin of error.

It is hardly worth digging into the numbers, but here they are:

Politics — Democrats are fondest of Congress, at 12%, followed by Independents at 9% and Republicans at 7%.

Gender — 10% of men and 9% of women approve of what Congress is doing.

Race — African Americans are big supporters of Congress at 18%. White, only 5%.

Age — 18-30-year olds are most supportive at 19%. The 51+ age group really, really doesn’t like Congress – 5%.

Not that voters will do much about it. Even though most national polls say that people want to “throw the bums out,” that rarely happens. Redistricting basically guarantees safe seats.

— John Robinson


Even more Elon Poll in the news

Daily AdvanceGreenville Daily Reflector and the Robesonian — The latest Elon University Poll finds that just 28 percent of North Carolinians approve of the job the General Assembly is doing. You might think that would worry Republican legislative leaders who control the House and Senate. There’s an election in November after all and the miserably low approval numbers could mean trouble for Republicans at the polls. But it’s almost a certainty that they won’t.

The Federalist — …but Senator Kay Hagan’s approval numbers, if the latest Elon poll is to be believed, are radioactive at just 33%. Thom Tillis, the front runner in the Republican primary, may not be well liked either, but his numbers, infact, even President Obama’s, are healthier than the embattled senator. We forecast a loss approaching ten points for Pryor, and just over five points for Hagan now.

Duke Chronicle — Hagan’s approval rating is at its lowest yet—with only one-third of North Carolina registered voters approving of her job performance, according to the latest Elon University poll. Hagan is the only politician in the poll whose rating dropped since November.

The Pendulum — Last week, the Elon University Poll surveyed people across North Carolina about their opinion on state and national leadership as well as social issues.

Fayetteville Observer — An Elon University poll released last week shows that only a third of N.C. registered voters approve of U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan’s job performance. And 49 percent, the pollster said, disapprove of her performance. It’s her worst rating in an Elon poll in a year.

More Elon Poll in the news

The Washington Post — There’s good news and bad news for proponents of legalizing marijuana. The bad news: New polls show it’s a losing fight in three states — by a slim margin in Pennsylvania and sizable margins in Iowa and North Carolina. The good news? It’s doing far better among the youngest residents of each state. That’s according to new polls out Monday from Quinnipiac University (Pennsylvania), the Des Moines Register (Iowa) and Elon University (North Carolina).

Fox News — A new poll from Elon University finds Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., only receives 55 percent approval amongst Democrats, down from 63 in November. Overall, 49 percent of Tar Heel state voters disapprove of Hagan. This is Hagan’s fourth straight drop in approval.

N.C. Policy Watch — The latest Elon University Poll finds North Carolinians unhappy with many of the incumbents representing them in Washington and in Raleigh. The February poll found Congress’ approval rating remaining in the single digits (8%). President Barack Obama fared better with an approval rating of 39%, while the majority (over  51%) said they disapprove of the job he is doing.

News & Record — I find it astounding that 38 percent of respondents said they have heard only a little about the coal ash spill into the Dan River that occurred more than a month ago … and 26 percent said they’ve heard nothing.

National Review — North Carolina senator Kay Hagan has seen her approval ratings in the state drop even more — just 33 percent of registered voters approve of the job she’s doing, versus 49 percent disapproving, according to a new poll from Elon University.

Washington Examiner — Approval ratings continue to drop for Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, who is seeking re-election in the key battleground state of North Carolina, according to a new poll.

And briefly, oh so, briefly on Politico.

Congress, the N.C. General Assembly remain unloved

Is it even still news that people don’t like Congress?

According to the Elon Poll, 83% of registered voters in N.C. who responded said they disapproved of Congress. Only 8% approved. That’s essentially unchanged from November.

The N.C. General Assembly fares better, with a 28% approval rating. (46% disapprove and 26% don’t know.) Even though the legislature hasn’t been in session for months, that’s a decline of 4 percentage points from November.

The only significant demographic breakout for the state legislature is the one you’d expect – politics. Thirty-nine percent of Republicans approve of the legislature’s work, compared with 25% of Democrats and 22% of Independents. It makes sense, given that the Republicans control the legislature.

When he campaigns for the U.S. Senate, Thom Tillis may want to avoid trumpeting that he is the speaker of the N.C. House.

— John Robinson

Coal ash spill? What coal ash spill?

Last month’s massive coal ash spill into the Dan River received national publicity by the major television networks and, most recently, in the New York Times. It has been written about frequently by all of the major newspapers in the state. Gov. McCrory’s relationship with Duke Energy and the state’s environmental oversight of the power company has been scrutinized.

So, how informed is the N.C. electorate about the spill? Not, according to the Elon Poll.

Sixty-four percent of registered voters who responded to the poll said they had heard little or nothing about the spill.

The demographic breakdown shows little distinction by political party, gender or race. Age, however, is telling. Eighty percent of the 18-30 age group had heard little or nothing about the spill.  Fifty-two percent of the 65+ age group had heard little or nothing about it. Put another way, 20% of the 18-30 age group knew a lot of the spill, and 48% of the 65+ group does.

Presumably it has to do with the news consumption habits of each group. The older demographic reads newspapers and watches more television news.

— John Robinson

Gay marriage opposition

Gay marriage may be gaining traction in some states but not in North Carolina, according to the Elon Poll.

Fifty percent of registered voters in N.C. oppose making gay marriage legal. Forty percent support it. In 2012, voters approved a constitutional amendment 60%-39% prohibiting same-sex marriage.

Digging into the numbers:

Politics: The largest divide — 48% of Democrats and 47% of Independents support making gay marriage legal, compared with only 22% of Republicans.

Gender: 41% of women and 39% of men support it.

Race: 41% of whites and 36% of African Americans support it.

Age: Predictably, the highest level of support, 56%, comes from the 18-30 age group. The lowest, 26%, from the 65+ age group.

— John Robinson