Republicans Lead Generic Ballot for only 2nd time in 4 years
Raleigh, N.C. – Voters in North Carolina prefer Republicans in charge of the General Assembly according to results of a new poll released today by the Civitas Institute.
According to the poll of 600 likely voters, respondents were asked if the election were held today for state legislature, would they be more likely to vote for the Republican candidate or the Democratic candidate. 40.7 percent of voters preferred Republicans. 37.8 percent said Democrats. 21.5 percent were undecided. This question is often referred to as a “generic ballot” test to gauge the overall sentiment of the voting public towards one party or another.
“For only the second time in the four and a half years that Civitas has been polling North Carolina do we see Republicans leading the generic ballot,” said Civitas Institute senior legislative analyst Chris Hayes. “The tide is certainly with the Republicans at this moment as Democrats have averaged a five point lead on the generic ballot since we began polling.”
The only other time Republicans led on the generic ballot test in North Carolina was in Civitas’ March 2006 poll. In what may not be a coincidence, that poll was taken right after the State Board of Elections completed hearings into the campaign finance irregularities of former Democratic House Speaker Jim Black.
This month’s poll was conducted the week before the State Board of Elections held hearings on former Democratic Governor Mike Easley’s finances.
“It appears these Democratic scandals are having some effects on who the public wants in charge of the state government,” added Hayes. “For Republicans to lead at those two points in time leads me to believe there may be some direct correlation between the events.”
The Civitas Poll is the only monthly live-caller poll of critical issues facing North Carolina. Full results of the poll will be revealed on the Civitas Institute’s Web site at www.nccivitas.org in the coming weeks.
Full text of question:
If the election for North Carolina state legislature were held today, for whom would you be more likely to vote – a Republican candidate or a Democratic candidate?
REPUBLICAN – 40.7%
DEMOCRATIC – 37.8%
UNDECIDED – 21.5%
This poll of 600 likely general election voters in North Carolina was conducted Oct. 20-21, 2009 by McLaughlin and Associates of Alexandria, Virginia. All interviews were conducted via telephone by professional interviewers.
Interview selection was random within predetermined geographic units. These units were structured to correlate with actual voter distributions in a statewide general election.
The poll of 600 likely general election voters has an accuracy of +/- 4.0% at a 95% confidence interval.