Tag Archives: Moral Monday

North Carolina is headed in the wrong direction

Republicans took office this January pledging to change the direction that North Carolina was heading. By all accounts, they were successful.

Here’s the bad news: most North Carolinians who responded in the latest Elon University Poll don’t like it.

Fifty-nine percent said the state was headed in the wrong direction, compared with 32 percent who said the course was right. Unfortunately for the GOP, 49 percent blamed the Republicans, compared with just 19 percent pointing the finger at the Democrats. (27 percent blamed neither.)

Could be worse: 70 percent of North Carolinians said that the country was headed in the wrong direction.

Digging into the blame game on the state level:

Political party: 76 percent of Democrats blame Republicans, and 56 percent of Republicans blamed Democrats. Shocking!

Gender: 51 percent of men and 48 percent of women blame Republicans.

Age: 47 percent of 18-30-year olds ranging to 59 percent of 65+ blame Republicans.

Race: 46 percent of whites and 60 percent of blacks blame Republicans.

The dissatisfaction holds across the board throughout the poll as the General Assembly and Gov. McCrory saw their approval ratings drop.

The General Assembly took a number of controversial — and to some, unpopular — steps, including changing voting access, making abortion access stricter, loosening gun control and not giving teachers raises. Thousands rallied in protest every Monday during the spring and summer.

The state came in for damning coverage from the national news media, including editorials in the New York Times and the Washington Post. It’s unclear, though, how much the media coverage impacted the results. When asked if they had heard of the Moral Monday protests, for instance, 39 percent of respondents said they hadn’t.

Of course, it’s more than what happens in Raleigh. The state’s unemployment level is still high. People dissatisfied with Congress and the president are likely to carry their dissatisfaction over to the state level.

Meanwhile, the poll also shows that 29 percent of North Carolinians think the economy will get worse, with 26 percent thinking it will get better and 42 percent saying it will stay the same. (Most Democrats think it will get better or stay about the same; most Republicans think it will get worse or stay about the same.) Hardly a vote of confidence.

Gov. McCrory, House Speaker Thom Tillis and Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger have said they are proud of the work they did leading the state in a different, more conservative, direction. As people get used to the new legislation and its impacts, the numbers likely will change. Only time will tell in which direction.

— John Robinson

Gov. McCrory’s job approval rating sinks in N.C.

Although they represent different parties, Gov. Pat McCrory and President Obama share the same plight: plunging approval ratings.

Gov. McCrory’s have dropped 7 percentage points since February, when he had been in office for about a month. Now, eight months, a General Assembly session and two vetoes later, his approval rating is at 36 percent. Disapproval: 46 percent.

Digging into the numbers:

Political party: A huge difference. 58 percent of Republicans think he’s doing a good job vs. 18 percent of Democrats. And the dropoff by Democrats has been steep. Last April, 31 percent of Democrats liked his performance (Republicans: 66 percent.)

Gender: 41 percent of men approve vs. 32 percent of women.

Race: 42 percent of whites approve vs. 22 percent of blacks. The dropoff in support among African Americans in the last five months was distinct, too. Last April, he had the support of 49 percent of whites and 40 percent of blacks.

It’s not surprising. The General Assembly passed some dramatic legislation pertaining to abortion, gun control and voting, among other things, and McCrory signed them. He vetoed two bills, which the legislature promptly overturned. Protests began on Mondays at the capital, and attendance grew in number each week, reaching several thousand people.

Meanwhile, McCrory made some public relations missteps, notably saying he mingled with the protesters regularly when he didn’t, and endorsing the high salaries given to political appointees with little experience.

Not to be outdone, the national news media hasn’t been kind to him or the General Assembly.

For his part, Gov. McCrory isn’t giving ground. He often spoken on taking the long view and needing to step on toes to get things done. He can afford it, too, because he’s not up for re-election for three years, and he doesn’t need to work with the General Assembly for another year.

— John Robinson