Tag Archives: News & Observer

Look for more political ads

If you are scoring at home, there are 58 days to go before the end of the nasty political ad season. That is, if you live in one of the 10 battleground states, and North Carolina is one of those. Here is what Rob Christensen, political reporter for the News & Observer and a member of Elon Poll’s political panel last week, says:

Republicans were so certain of carrying the Tar Heel State last time that South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham famously boasted: “I’ll beat (multiple gold medal winner) Michael Phelps in swimming before Barack Obama wins North Carolina.”

After Obama improbably carried North Carolina in 2008, the first time since 1976 that a Democratic presidential candidate won the state, Republicans are making no such boasts this time. This summer, the state has endured a $50 million advertising barrage, with Romney and his allies outspending Obama by more than 2-to-1.

Meanwhile, some polls are showing a bounce for President Obama after the Democratic National Convention. We’ll see if it lasts longer than Gov. Romney’s.

Elon Poll at the Democratic National Convention

With the presidential race picking up intensity with each passing day, the Elon University Poll is breaking with its long-standing tradition of surveying North Carolina residents. This week, we will poll likely voters in North Carolina with the results scheduled to be released on Sept. 3.

Labor Day is historically the unofficial kick off of the campaign season, although in reality the two presidential candidates have been running for months. The Elon University Institute for Politics and Public Affairs, in partnership with the Charlotte Observer and the News & Observer, is purposely timing the poll to coincide with the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. 

The results will be released at the Charlotte Observer at a 10:30 a.m. Monday news conference, followed immediately by a panel discussion examining the presidential campaign. On the panel are Charlie Cook, editor of Cook Political Report & National Journal columnist; Domenico Montanaro, NBC News deputy political editor; Anita Kumar, White House correspondent for McClatchy Newspapers; Rob Christensen, chief political writer for the News and Observer of Raleigh; and Taylor Batten, editorial page editor for the Charlotte Observer.

If you’re in Charlotte for the convention, please join us. We expect to get a look from the poll at how North Carolina voters are thinking and insight from the panel into state and presidential politics.

— John Robinson

Elon Poll in the news

The same-sex marriage ban amendment has captured the attention of the national media. And Mileah Kromer, assistant director of the Elon University Poll has, too.

The National Journal



The News & Observer


Confusion over the marriage amendment

Is there any doubt that many North Carolinians don’t understand the marrigage amendment that is on the May primary ballot? Craig Jarvis at the News & Observer wrote an article Friday about the confusion — confusion we’ve mentioned often

Everything from what it’s called to what it would do has been disputed. Poll results released Thursday show solid support for the referendum – until the pollsters explained to the potential voters what it proposes.

It bans gay marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships.

In fact, our February poll results clearly show that North Carolinians believe the state should recognize same-sex couples either in marriage or in civil unions. But a PPP poll says likely voters support the amendment. (I address the differences in the two polls here.)  
It is a politically risky move by the Republican legislature and cuts against the trend in other states. A recent article in Politico describes how the GOP nationally is trying to distance itself from such bans.
What was once a front-and-center issue for rank-and-file Republicans — the
subject of many hotly worded House and Senate floor speeches — is virtually a dead issue, as Republicans in Congress don’t care to have gay marriage litigated in the Capitol.

Even more than that, Republican leadership has evolved, too. It has quietly worked behind the scenes to kill amendments that reaffirm opposition to same-sex unions, several sources told POLITICO.

We release new poll results on the amendment Monday.

— John Robinson

A deeper look at the North Carolina economy

Rob Christensen of the News & Observer traveled to Rocky Mount to put a human face on one of the results of the latest Elon University Poll: the worry over the economy. From his front-page story:

Asked what was the most important issue facing the state, North Carolinians overwhelmingly (53 percent) cited the economy. At 16 percent, education was a distant second.

Some small-business owners said they are holding on by their fingertips. Workers in the old economy such as textiles have seen their jobs disappear and are having to settle for work that pays a fraction of what they used to earn. Retirement plans are being delayed. And others, already living on the edge, find themselves pushed even further to the fringes.

— John Robinson

Elon University Poll in the news

Here are breakdowns of all the poll results.

(Image courtesy of the Newseum.)

News & Observer: A majority of North Carolinians are opposed to the constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages that will be on the May 8 ballot, even as they remain skeptical about gay marriages.

WCNC: An exclusive new poll shows North Carolinians are more optimistic about the economy, favor Mitt Romney in the GOP race to the White (House)and are warming to the idea of same-sex marriage.


N.C. Policy Watch: Opposition to a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage has risen slightly over the last two months.

News & Record: North Carolina residents are unhappy with the job their state legislature is doing, according to results from an Elon University Poll released Friday.

Pam’s House Blend: Hot off the press…news that should shake things up for the fundies trying to “protect” marriage in NC. The trend is moving in the direction of sanity.

The Pendulum: The results from the most recent Elon Poll reveal that North Carolinians have an increasingly favorable opinion of President Barack Obama and are more optimistic about the national economy.









Elon University Poll in the news

The Charlotte Observer: President Barack Obama’s poll numbers are inching upward in this key swing state, but more North Carolinians still disapprove than approve of how he’s handling the economy and his job overall.

WTVD: An exclusive Elon University ABC11/Raleigh News and Observer poll shows President Obama may have an uphill climb in his effort to win North Carolina in the November election.
News & Record: President Barack Obama’s job approval numbers have ticked up slightly over the past six months, according to the Elon University Poll. That news comes as the president prepares for what amounts to a campaign visit at a truck manufacturing plant near Charlotte on Wednesday.
News & Observer: President Barack Obama’s poll numbers are inching upward in this key swing state, but more North Carolinians still disapprove than approve of how he’s handling the economy and his job overall.
News 14:  More North Carolina voters approve of the job of President Barack Obama than just a few months ago. In a new Elon University/News 14 Carolina poll, the president’s favorability rating is on the rise.
Burlington Times-News: President Barack Obama’s job approval rating is up slightly, according to the results of an Elon University Poll released this week.
— John Robinson