There is a lot of interesting data in the Elon Poll on the upcoming 2008 US Senate race. According to them Dole’s approval rating is 50.4% approve, 24.7% disapprove.
STRONGLY DISAPPROVE 9.9
STRONGLY APPROVE 12.4
PPP's latest approval number for Dole was 45%. The difference between residents and likely voters could make up that difference, but PPP found many more respondents willing to say they disapproved of Dole-- 40%.
Strangely, they also asked whether or not respondents were satisfied with Dole's representation of the state. Not sure what's the difference between approval and satisfaction, but 53.2% were satisfied, and 28% were dissatisfied.
Now let me quote directly from the Elon press release:
Respondents indicated various levels of satisfaction with Dole’s representation of North Carolinians on public policy issues. Those indicating they were satisfied or very satisfied:
* Family Values: 54 percent
* Education: 47 percent
* Transportation: 40 percent
* Economy: 39 percent
* Political Corruption: 35 percent
* The Iraq War: 32 percent
* Health Care Costs: 32 percent
* Immigration: 28 percent
When considering what issues will influence their vote for U.S. Senator next year, respondents gave the following answers:
* The Iraq War: 78 percent
* Economy: 76 percent
* Health Care Costs: 75 percent
* Immigration: 73 percent
* Taxes: 72 percent
* Education: 72 percent
* Family Values: 66 percent
* Political Corruption: 65 percent
* Transportation: 37 percent
What this tells me is that the issues that North Carolinians are caring about when they pick a US Senator are exactly the issues that they are least satisfied about when it comes to Senator Dole; especially the Iraq War, but also the economy, health care, and even immigration. That cannot be good for an incumbent.
Finally, the most important question:
Do you plan to vote [for or against] Elizabeth Dole as U.S. Senator from North Carolina?
TOO EARLY TO TELL (v) 18.5
DON'T KNOW/ NOT SURE (v) 18.9
REFUSED (v) 1.2
I don't like adding the "too early to tell" choice. That dilutes the poll results. Nevertheless, only 35% say they are surely going to vote for Dole. That is WELL BELOW the 50% mark and very dangerous for an incumbent. Democrats ought to be optimistic with this result.