HPU Poll Reports on Pivotal U.S. Senate Races

The HPU Poll, housed in High Point University’s Survey Research Center in North Carolina, will field surveys in key races this fall that may determine who controls the U.S. Senate. HPU will survey likely voters in three highly competitive races in Colorado, New Hampshire and North Carolina to gain a snapshot of campaigns that may determine the U.S. Senate’s leadership.

These campaigns feature incumbents facing tough re-election fights:

  • Senator Kay Hagan in North Carolina
  • Senator Jeanne Shaheen in New Hampshire
  • Senator Mark Udall in Colorado

With results due the week of Oct. 13, the three polls will enable the media and general public to compare key metrics on these toss-up elections as they enter the final stretch.

The HPU Poll is also releasing further results on North Carolina specifically during the weeks of Oct. 27 and Nov. 17.

Questions will include examining voters’ opinions on the key “horse races” themselves, presidential job performance, direction of the country, economic and business conditions, health care reform and the parties in Congress. A selection of other topics include voter views on contraceptive coverage by health care plans, marijuana legalization, U.S. foreign policy priorities, gender and political leadership and candidate leadership qualities.

NC CO NH silhouette


  • Released:
    • September 22 – Likely Voters – North Carolina
    • October 13 – Likely Voters – North Carolina – Colorado – New Hampshire
    • October 27 – Likely Voters – North Carolina
  • To be released:
    • November 17 – All Adults Post-Election Survey – North Carolina



Since 2010, the HPU Poll has surveyed North Carolinians about issues such as healthcare, education, political campaigns, public policy, gas prices, the economy and more. Results from polls in the past have been featured in national media outlets including The Washington Post, New York Times, Yahoo! News, Politico, USA Today and The Huffington Post. Results of previous surveys are available at www.highpoint.edu/src/.



  • “Horse race” questions on key races
  • Presidential job performance
  • Right direction/wrong track
  • Personal financial and business conditions
  • Attitudes toward Affordable Care Act/Obamacare
  • Democratic/Republican/Tea Party favorability ratings
  • Generic Congressional ballot test
  • Candidate characteristics
  • Candidate issue ownership
  • Education
  • Hydraulic fracturing (fracking)
  • Marijuana legalization
  • Health insurance and contraception
  • U.S. role in the world
  • U.S. foreign policy toward Syria and Iraq


HPU Poll photos




Martin Kifer2Dr. Martin Kifer joined High Point University in fall 2009 as director of High Point University’s Poll and Survey Research Center, as well as assistant professor of political science. Martin graduated from Earlham College, and earned his M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota.

After completing his graduate coursework, Martin worked as an analyst for the international and corporate consulting team at Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and as a survey researcher for Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.  Martin served as a legislative assistant in the office of former U.S. Representative Baron Hill, and a Peace Corps Volunteer (Republic of Guinea, 1996-98).

Martin’s research and teaching interests include political campaigns and new media, U.S. foreign policy, and political opinion.  His work on a long-term project with James N. Druckman (Northwestern University) and Michael Parkin (Oberlin College) that examines how congressional candidates campaign on-line has resulted in articles in The American Political Science Review, Journal of Elections, Public Opinion, and Parties, Social Science Computer Review and Political Communication.



Brian McDonald joins High Point University as Assistant Director of HPU’s Survey Research Center. He brings more than 10 years’ experience in telephone interviewing, survey research and data analysis to this role. In addition, he moderated focus groups, developed research instruments, and was involved in projects involving student success, enrollment and retention research.

He earned his B.B.A. and M.B.A. from Kent State University (KSU) and was the Program Director of the Survey Research Lab at KSU. During his tenure, he managed a staff of students that collected data on a variety of topics on over 50,000 respondents nationwide.

Brian‘s expertise is in the areas of applying statistical techniques in the collection, preparation and analysis of data. His knowledge of the principles, processes, and methods of survey research will serve him well in his role at HPU.

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