As much attention as Larry Kissell's no vote on health care has gotten from the media and political insiders, our recent poll in his district found that just 29% of his constituents could correctly identify how he voted on the matter. 44% thought he voted for it and 28% were unsure.
That finding is a good reminder that the average voter does not follow politics very closely and that it takes something dramatic to happen for them to take notice. For instance even though Bev Perdue has been very visible this week, I doubt we're going to see much immediate difference in her poll numbers because it's mostly being followed by strong partisans who have made up their minds about Perdue no matter what she does. Lower information voters who are more susceptible to changing their minds aren't really tuned in right now.
As for Kissell he may find himself in better shape once more voters in his district become aware of how he voted on health care. His approval with those who know he voted against it is 52%, compared to 44% with those who think he supported the bill. In a district where a majority are opposed to the Democratic health care plan he cast the right vote for his political future.