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HPU/News & Record Poll: Guilford Residents More Optimistic About Local Government Direction

Posted on November 19, 2013.

HIGH POINT, N.C., Nov. 19, 2013 – The majority of Guilford County residents don’t like the direction the U.S. is headed, but they feel more optimistic as they think about things closer to home.

According to an HPU/News & Record poll, 69 percent of respondents said they think the U.S. is on the wrong track. Only 21 percent thought the U.S. was headed in the right direction, and 10 percent said they didn’t know or refused to answer.

The results are better for the state of North Carolina and Guilford County. Fifty-seven percent say North Carolina is on the wrong track and 32 percent think the state is going in the right direction. For Guilford County, 37 percent of respondents said it’s on the wrong track while 44 percent said the county is moving in the right direction.

That optimism comes even though only 20 percent of respondents said Guilford County’s economy is better than it was 12 months ago. Twenty-four percent say it’s worse and 53 percent say it’s about the same. However, 44 percent said the county’s economy is getting better, 35 percent said it will get worse and 17 percent think it will stay about the same.

“The more local the government, the more optimistic people in Guilford County seem to feel about the direction it is taking,” says Dr. Martin Kifer director of the HPU Poll and assistant professor of political science. “That’s despite relatively pessimistic assessments of the local economy.”

All Adults – Do you think things in this country are generally going in the right direction or do you feel things have gotten pretty seriously off on the wrong track?

Right Direction – 21 percent
Wrong Track – 69 percent
(Don’t know/refused) – 10

(All adult (Guilford County resident) sample surveyed Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013, n = 703 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 3.7 percent)

All Adults – What about here in North Carolina? Do you think things are generally going in the right direction or do you feel things have gotten pretty seriously off on the wrong track?

Right Direction – 32 percent
Wrong Track – 57 percent
(Don’t know/refused) – 11 percent

(All adult (Guilford County resident) sample surveyed Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013, n = 703 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 3.7 percent)

All Adults – What about here in Guilford County? Do you think things are generally going in the right direction or do you feel things have gotten pretty seriously off on the wrong track?

Right Direction – 44 percent
Wrong Track – 37 percent
(Don’t know/refused) – 19 percent

(All adult (Guilford County resident) sample surveyed Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013, n = 703 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 3.7 percent)

All Adults – Thinking about the economy here in Guilford County, would you say that the economy is better than it was twelve months ago, worse than it was twelve months ago, or about the same as it was?

Better – 20 percent
Worse – 24 percent
About the same – 53 percent
(Don’t know/refused) – 3 percent

(All adult (Guilford County resident) sample surveyed Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013, n = 703 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 3.7 percent)

All Adults – Thinking just about the overall conditions here in Guilford County, do you think that the economy here in Guilford County is getting better or getting worse?

Better – 44 percent
Worse – 35 percent
Stay about the same – 17 percent
Don’t know/refused – 4 percent

(All adult (Guilford County resident) sample surveyed Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013, n = 703 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 3.7 percent)

The most recent survey was fielded by live interviewers at the High Point University Survey Research Center calling on Nov. 4 – 7 and 9 – 12, 2013. The responses from a sample Guilford County landline telephone exchanges and cell phones associated with zip codes in Guilford County came from 703 adults with landline or cellular telephones. Those respondents were further screened to ensure they considered themselves to be residents of Guilford County. The Survey Research Center contracted with Survey Sampling International to acquire this sample. The survey has an estimated margin of sampling error of approximately 3.7 percentage points for these respondents. The data are weighted toward population estimates for age, gender and race. In addition to sampling error, factors such as question wording and other methodological choices in conducting survey research can introduce additional error into the findings of opinion polls.

Further results and methodological details from the most recent survey and past studies can be found at the Survey Research Center website at http://www.highpoint.edu/src/. Memos with approval ratings for North Carolina from the early September, March, February and January 2013 HPU Polls are available at:

http://acme.highpoint.edu/~mkifer/src/24memob.pdf
http://acme.highpoint.edu/~mkifer/src/23memoc.pdf
http://acme.highpoint.edu/~mkifer/src/22memob.pdf
http://acme.highpoint.edu/~mkifer/src/21memoc.pdf

Dr. Martin Kifer, assistant professor of political science, serves as the director of the HPU Poll, and Dr. Sadie Leder Elder, assistant professor of psychology, serves as the associate director of the HPU Poll.

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