SHARE

RESULTS OF LATEST WINTHROP POLL ARE IN

 

ALMOST ONE MONTH TO-THE-DAY AFTER PRES. OBAMA’S RE-ELECTION,

48% OF SC RESPONDENTS SAY THEY APPROVE OF HIS JOB PERFORMANCE, WHILE 41% GIVE IT A THUMBS DOWN

 

RESPONDENTS ALMOST EVENLY DIVIDED WHEN ASKED

TO ASSESS GOV. HALEY’S JOB PERFORMANCE

 

MORE THAN 90% SAY THEY DO NOT CONSIDER

THEMSELVES MEMBERS OF THE TEA PARTY

 

38% SAY SC GOP PRIMARY WINNER NEWT GINGRICH

WOULD HAVE RACKED UP ABOUT THE SAME RESULTS

AS MITT ROMNEY DID VS. OBAMA

 

NEARLY HALF THINK THAT ECONOMIC

CONDITIONS IN SC ARE GETTING BETTER

ROCK HILL, S.C. – The results of the latest Winthrop Poll, of 929 respondents living in South Carolina are in. The survey was in the field from Nov. 25-Dec. 2, 2012. After weights (for sex, age, and race) have been applied, results which use all respondents have a margin of error of approximately+/- 3.5% at the 95% confidence level. Results that use less than the full sample (e.g. just Registered Voters or just those who voted in the 2012 presidential election) will naturally have a higher margin of error.

For data of those who voted in the 2012 presidential election, the sample size is 600 and after weights (for sex, age, and race) have been applied, results which only use these respondents have a margin of error of approximately +/-4% at the 95% confidence level.

For additional information on methodology, see conclusion of poll.

Among the Winthrop Poll findings:

  • Almost one month to-the-day after Barack Obama won a second term as president, 48% of all South Carolinians polled approved of the job he is doing. The category of respondents who most disapproved of his performance—at 51.9%—were those who reported that they had voted in the presidential election last month.
  • More than three-in-four of all respondents disapproved of the way Congress is doing its job.
  • When you factor in the margin of error, and remove those who either expressed no opinion—or refused to answer whether they approved or disapproved of her job performance—Gov. Nikki Haley garnered roughly even approval/disapproval ratings among all those polled, registered voters, and those who voted in the 2012 presidential election.
  • Gov. Haley garners a much higher approval rating—61.5% vs. 19% who disapprove of her job performance—among those who are registered to vote and say they are either Republicans or Independents who lean Republican.
  • Respondents were almost equally divided as to whether they think South Carolina is on the right track (40.2%) compared with those who say it is headed in the wrong direction (41.9%).
  • 38.2% of those polled say Newt Gingrich, who bested Mitt Romney in the S.C. GOP Primary in January, would have posted about the same result as Romney did in the presidential election. Almost 40% say he would have been less successful than Romney.
  • Almost one-half of all respondents say they think that economic conditions in South Carolina are getting better, with over 50% of them rating their personal financial situation as excellent or good.
  • While the U.S. Supreme Court has not tipped its hand this session as to whether it will hear any cases involving same-sex marriages, almost 50% of poll respondents said they felt somewhat—or very—strongly that S.C. law should not be used to decide the divorce cases of gay couples who were legally married in Washington D.C., or one of the nine states that allows it.
  • Among Registered Voters, the number of respondents who said they were not members of the Tea Party was decidedly significant. While 90.8% said they were not, a mere 5.7% said they were.

Note: Topline (may not sum to 100% due to rounding)

Demographics

T.1

Census*

December 2012 Winthrop Poll – All Respondents

Sex
Male

47.94

50.0

Female

52.06

50.0

Race
Caucasian

68.57

64.0

African American

26.5

29.6

Other

4.93

6.5

Age
18-19

4.06

4.3

20-29

17.97

17.6

30-39

16.48

16.6

40-49

17.98

17.8

50-59

17.76

17.4

60-69

13.99

13.3

70-79

7.52

7.1

80-89

3.6

3.3

90-99

.62

.7

99 & over

.018

0.0

Refused

1.8

*Census percentages are ONLY for those S.C. residents age 18 and over.

T.2

Registered Voters – SC Election Commission

December 2012 Winthrop Poll – Registered Voters

Sex
Male

44.9

46.1

Female

55.1

53.9

Race
White

69.1

71.0

Non-white

30.9

29.0

Age
18-24

4.4

4.3

25-44

38.2

34.8

45-65

36.2

38.7

65+

21.2

20.6

Refused

1.6

As was demonstrated by the national election outcome, people who suggest reweighting (or “unskewing”) polls based on a snapshot of self-reported partisanship have a fundamental misunderstanding of polling, in general, and sampling in particular.

A better test of the accuracy of our sampling would be to compare reported votes from our respondents to the actual vote in the recent presidential election.  Reported vote from the Winthrop Poll seen below represent answers from those sampled who were screened first for registration status and then for whether or not they actually voted.

2012 Election Results

T.3

SC Election Commission – Official Results

December 2012 Winthrop Poll – Reported Vote

Romney

54.56

53.2

Obama

44.09

44.8

Other

1.35

1.9

December 2012 Winthrop Poll – Results

T.4 Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President of the United States?

All

Registered Voters

Voted in 2012 Presidential Election

Approve

48.0

42.5

43.1

Disapprove

41.2

49.4

51.9

Not Sure

8.9

6.2

3.9

Refused

1.9

1.9

1.1

*NOTE: Nationally, among “Likely Voters” Approve: 56%; Disapprove: 44% (Rasmussen 11/29-12/1). Among the general population Approve: 52%; Disapprove: 41% (Gallup 11/29-12/1)

T.5 Do you approve or disapprove of the way Congress is handling its job?

All

Registered Voters

Voted in 2012 Presidential Election

Approve

13.2

14.0

13.1

Disapprove

77.1

78.0

79.4

Not Sure

8.8

7.1

6.4

Refused

1.0

1.0

1.1

T.6 Do you approve or disapprove of the way Nikki Haley is handling her job as Governor of South Carolina?

All

Registered Voters

Voted in 2012 Presidential Election

Republicans – Including Leaners (Registered Voters only)

Approve

38.3

40.0

40.5

61.5

Disapprove

41.3

42.4

42.9

19.0

Not Sure

19.1

16.2

15.4

17.2

Refused

1.2

1.4

1.2

2.3

*NOTE: Due to larger number of “Not Sure/ Don’t Know” answers, comparisons to national figures (where there are notably fewer ‘Not Sure/ Don’t Know’) are erroneous.  Also remember that point estimates that are within the margin of error are functionally equivalent.

**NOTE: When those who express no opinion or refuse to answer are removed, Gov. Haley enjoys a roughly 50/50 approval rating when the margin of error is factored in for all respondents, registered voters, and those who voted in the 2012 presidential election.  She enjoys notably higher approval ratings among Republicans and Independents who Lean Republican (who are also registered to vote — partisanship is self-reported; we do not register by party in South Carolina)

T.7 Do you approve or disapprove of the way the South Carolina State Legislature is handling its job?

All

Registered Voters

Voted in 2012 Presidential Election

Approve

38.0

40.4

42.5

Disapprove

33.0

32.8

33.0

Not Sure

27.6

25.3

23.0

Refused

1.4

1.4

1.4

T.8 Thinking about the current path that our nation is taking, do you think our country is on the right track or headed in the wrong direction?

All

Right Track

39.6

Wrong Direction

53.0

Don’t Know/ Refused to Answer

7.4

T.9 Thinking about the current path that the state of South Carolina is taking, do you think South Carolina is on the right track or headed in the wrong direction?

All

Right Track

40.2

Wrong Direction

41.9

Don’t Know/ Refused to Answer

17.9

T.10 Even though Mitt Romney won the Republican Nomination, more voters in the South Carolina Republican Primary held in January of this year voted for Newt Gingrich.  Do you think Newt Gingrich would have been more successful running against Obama than Mitt Romney, less successful running against Obama than Mitt Romney, or achieved about the same result running against Obama as Mitt Romney.

All

Registered Voters

Voted in 2012 Presidential Election

Republicans – Including Leaners (Registered Voters only)

More Successful

14.9

15.5

15.2

21.0

Less Successful

39.9

41.2

42.8

42.0

About the Same

38.2

36.1

35.6

32.0

Don’t Know/ Not Sure

5.8

5.8

5.1

4.1

Refused to Answer

1.1

1.4

1.3

.9

*NOTE: Those in the Republican/Leaner column are registered to vote and identified themselves as Republicans or Independents who lean Republican, but they may or may not have voted in the January 2012 SC Republican Presidential Primary

T.11 What do you think is the most important problem facing the United States of America today?

(Top four responses listed.  Response options are not read to respondents.  Interviewers code responses into one of 29 answer options)

All

Economy/ Economic-financial crisis

29.9

Budget deficit or debt

14.8

Jobs or unemployment

12.0

Politicians/ Government

9.3

T.12 What do you think is the most important problem facing the state of South Carolina today?

(Top four responses listed.  Response options are not read to respondents.  Interviewers code responses into one of 29 answer options)

All

Jobs or unemployment

21.7

Economy/ Economic-financial crisis

16.9

Education

16.1

Politicians/ Government

7.0

T.13 How would you rate the condition of the national economy these days? Is it very good, fairly good, fairly bad or very bad?

All

Very Good

1.7

Fairly Good

29.6

Fairly Bad

39.3

Very Bad

27.4

Not Sure

1.7

Refused to Answer

0.4

 

T.14 Right now, do you think that economic conditions in the country as a whole are getting better or getting worse?

All

Getting Better

49.1

Getting Worse