According to the most recent survey results from Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind, 47% of Delaware voters say the state is headed in the right direction, down from 54% last February, and 39% say the state is on the wrong track, up from 30% last February.
At the same time, Governor Minner’s approval rating has declined to a one-to-one ratio, 42% approving and 42% disapproving, down from a robust 51%-32% early in the year. The softening of the governor’s approval rating can be seen across demographic categories but is more pronounced among Republicans and men.
The governor also comes out on the short side of favorable and unfavorable opinion with 37% saying their view of her is favorable but 45% saying their impression is unfavorable. Her 37% favorable opinion is a decline of 12 points from last February while unfavorable opinion increased 9 points from February.
Other elected statewide officials are not suffering in their public image. Republican Mike Castle garners 63% favorable opinion and just 14% unfavorable, numbers unchanged since early in the year. Likewise, Democrat Tom Carper maintains 60% favorable opinion against 16% unfavorable, little different from earlier measures. And Beau Biden has improved his favorable to unfavorable ratio to 2:1 (40%-18%).
As for some of the possible candidates to succeed the governor, John Carney leads in name recognition with 70%. His favorable opinion tops his unfavorable opinion by 31% to 12% and he has room to grow with 28% saying they have no opinion of him positive or negative and 30% who say they haven’t heard of him.
Jack Markell is recognized by about half of voters (49%) and half of those have a favorable opinion of him while just 5% of voters have an unfavorable opinion. Other gubernatorial mentions include Alan Levin and Mike Protack. But a majority of voters (59%) don’t recognize Levin and another 23% have no opinion of him. A majority (57%) don’t recognize Protack and another 23% have no opinion of him.
“Name recognition is the same as gold in electoral politics,” said Peter J. Woolley, a professor of political science at Fairleigh Dickinson University and director of the poll. “Those who start with the best name recognition generally will garner other campaign advantages,” Woolley added. “But on the bright side for those who are less well-known, the opportunity to define themselves still lies ahead.”
The PublicMind poll of 700 randomly selected registered voters statewide in Delaware was conducted by telephone from October 3 through October 9 and has a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points.
Contact: Peter Woolley 973.670.3239 Dan Cassino 973.896.7072
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