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New poll shows AG Josh Stein widening gap over Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson in NC’s governor’s race

Credit: iStock

by Clayton Henkel, NC Newsline
April 22, 2024

With six and a half months before Election Day, the latest Meredith College poll shows Democrat Josh Stein gaining a bit more ground over Republican Mark Robinson in North Carolina’s gubernatorial contest. Stein now leads Robinson 45%-36% — up from a five percentage point advantage in February.

Source: Meredith Poll

Poll director and political scientist David McLennan says while Robinson gets a lot of support from conservatives in the state, Stein is growing his base among unaffiliated voters and those who say they are politically moderate.

“Robinson continues to get negative media coverage of his statements and actions from the past. This enhanced exposure of Robinson’s extreme statements, as well as concerns that some of Robinson’s policy positions, seems to be shifting the unaffiliated voters into Stein’s camp,” noted McLennan.

Most recently Robinson has drawn attention for failing to file federal income taxes for five years between 1998-2002. Robinson’s communications director Mike Lonergan told ABC News that Robinson’s made no secret of his past financial challenges and that it’s “old news recycled by Democrats.”

McLennan notes that while Stein has increased his lead since their last poll in February, his campaign cannot assume the 2024 governor’s race is settled.

“There are still a significant number of undecided voters–15 percent–as to not cause the Stein campaign to get overconfident.”

Another five percent of poll respondents said they would vote for someone other than Stein or Robinson if the election were held today.

Governor Roy Cooper will not be on the ballot in November, but still enjoys some of the highest job approval numbers. The Meredith College Poll found 52% of North Carolinians approve of Cooper’s job performance, with 38 percent saying they disapprove.

“Roy Cooper’s job approval numbers, especially in a state with such a strong partisan divide, are remarkable,” said McLennan.

The poll found Cooper’s approval has fallen among the youngest voters in the state, which may be a residual effect of how those young voters perceive Joe Biden as president.

Both Biden and former president Donald Trump continue to struggle with their favorability rating in this latest poll. Trump has a slight, though statistically insignificant advantage over Biden in terms of approval, 41% compares to 40%.

The new Meredith poll found Gen Z males are twice as likely as Gen Z females to view Trump favorably, making for some interesting discussions on college campuses heading toward November.

“It is worth noting that only one-third of 18–24-year-old voters approve of the two elderly major party nominees,” McLennan shared. “This may not bode well for those who are hoping that the youth vote will be like or stronger than in 2020.”

The Meredith College poll surveyed 801 North Carolinians between April 11-17 and have a margin of error of 3.5%.

Click here for full poll results.

NC Newsline is part of States Newsroom, a nonprofit news network supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. NC Newsline maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Rob Schofield for questions: info@ncnewsline.com. Follow NC Newsline on Facebook and Twitter.

This story is republished from NC Newsline under a Creative Commons license. Read the original story.