HPU Poll: Presidential Approval at 44 Percent, NC Governor Approval at 52 Percent

HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 9, 2018 – A High Point University Poll finds that North Carolinians give President Donald Trump a job approval rating of 44 percent and Gov. Roy Cooper a job approval rating of 52 percent. The survey also finds that North Carolinians are split on who they would vote for in U.S. Congressional races if they were held today.

When asked about their choices for U.S. Congress, 39 percent of North Carolinians say they would vote for the Republican Party’s candidate if the election were held today, 37 percent say they would vote for the Democratic Party’s candidate and 2 percent say they would vote for a Libertarian Party candidate if one were on the ballot. One in five respondents (19 percent) say they did not know or were unsure for whom they would vote and 4 percent indicated they would prefer to vote for some other candidate.

Twenty-five percent of North Carolinians approve of how U.S. Congress is doing its job, while 57 percent disapprove and 19 percent offer no view either way.

Overall, a majority of North Carolinians (51 percent) still see the country on the wrong track, and a similar fraction appears to believe that the country is headed in the right direction (39 percent). This is comparable to the most recent HPU Poll.

“The similarities between our current poll and our September poll do not indicate any significant shift in how the state is feeling,” says Brian McDonald, associate director of the HPU Poll and adjunct instructor of survey research methods. “The most recent HPU Poll continues to show how North Carolinians feel about the direction of the country and the job the president is doing.”

All adults – Direction of the Country (October 2018)

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 – 39 percent

Wrong track – 51 percent

Don’t know/refuse – 10 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) phone and online sample, surveyed Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, n = 921 and credibility interval of +/- 4.2 percent)

All adults – Presidential, N.C. Governor and U.S. Congress Job Approval (October 2018)

Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Donald Trump is handling his job as president?

Approve – 44 percent

Disapprove – 49 percent

Don’t know/Refuse – 7 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) phone and online sample, surveyed Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, n = 921 and credibility interval of +/- 4.2 percent)

Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Roy Cooper is handling his job as governor?

Approve – 52 percent

Disapprove – 26 percent

Don’t know/Refuse – 23 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) phone and online sample, surveyed Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, n = 921 and credibility interval of +/- 4.2 percent)

Do you approve or disapprove of the way that the U.S. Congress is handling its job?

Approve – 25 percent

Disapprove – 57 percent

Don’t know/Refuse – 19 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) phone and online sample, surveyed Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, n = 921 and credibility interval of +/- 4.2 percent)

All adults – Generic Ballot – U.S. Congress (October 2018)

If the elections for U.S. Congress were being held TODAY, would you vote for the (Republican Party’s candidate) OR the (Democratic Party’s candidate) for Congress in your district? [PARTY ORDER RANDOMIZED]

Republican Candidate – 39 percent

Democratic Candidate – 37 percent

Libertarian Candidate – 2 percent

Other – 4 percent

Don’t know/Undecided/Refuse – 19 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) phone and online sample, surveyed Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, n = 921 and credibility interval of +/- 4.2 percent)

The most recent HPU Poll was fielded by live interviewers at the High Point University Survey Research Center calling on Sept. 28-Oct. 7, 2018, and an online survey fielded at the same time. The responses from a sample of all North Carolina counties came from 921 adults interviewed online (603 respondents) as well as landline or cellular telephones (318 respondents). The Survey Research Center contracted with Survey Sampling International to acquire these samples, and fielded the online survey using its Qualtrics platform. This is a combined sample of live phone interviews and online interviews. The online sampling is from a panel of respondents, so their participation does not adhere to usual assumptions associated with random selection. Therefore, it is not appropriate to assign a classical margin of sampling error for the results. In this case, the SRC provides a credibility interval of plus or minus 4.2 percentage points to account for a traditional 95 percent confidence interval for the estimates (plus or minus 3.2 percentage points) and a design effect of 1.3 (based on the weighting). The data is weighted toward population estimates for age, gender, race, and education level based on U.S. Census numbers for North Carolina. Factors such as question wording and other methodological choices in conducting survey research can introduce additional error into the findings of opinion polls. Details from this survey are available at http://www.highpoint.edu/src/files/2018/10/61memoA.pdf.

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/. The materials online include past press releases as well as memos summarizing the findings (including approval ratings) for each poll since 2010.

The HPU Poll reports methodological details in accordance with the standards set out by AAPOR’s Transparency Initiative, and the HPU Survey Research Center is a Charter Member of the Initiative. For more information, see http://transparency.aapor.org/index.php/transparency.

You can follow the HPU Poll on Twitter at https://twitter.com/HPUSurveyCenter.

Dr. Martin Kifer, chair and associate professor of political science, serves as the director of the HPU Poll and Brian McDonald is the associate director of the HPU Poll.

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