Gov. Haley’s approval rating edges up

April 24, 2012 

Gov. Nikki Haley’s overall approval rating is on the mend -- but it’s still not good.

That’s according to a new Winthrop University poll released Tuesday that showed:

• Nearly 38 percent of registered voters said they approved of Haley’s job performance. She fares much better with her base. Nearly 60 percent of Republicans and independents who lean Republican say they approve of the Lexington County Republican.

• That marks an upswing for Haley, a first-term governor who has made jobs creation her top priority. A December Winthrop poll showed nearly 35 percent of registered voters approved. And only a slim majority of Republicans, nearly 53 percent, agreed with the way Haley was handling her job.

Haley is fairing better than state lawmakers, all of whom are up for reelection this year. About 34 percent of registered voters say they approve of the state legislature’s job performance, according to the poll. Forty-one percent disapprove.

On the economic front, South Carolinians are feeling better about the jobs situation.

When asked about the most important problem facing the U.S.—and the most important problem facing South Carolina —almost one-third fewer respondents identified jobs or unemployment as the most pressing issue compared to the results of Winthrop’s February poll.

While 22 percent identified jobs/unemployment in February as the number one problem nationally, now 14.7 percent selected that. And while 36.5 percent identified jobs/unemployment as the number one issue for the state in February, now 26.4 percent see that as the most pressing problem facing the state.

The results come from 981 adults living in South Carolina who were polled between April 15 and April 22. Results which use all respondents have a margin of error of plus or minus 3.13 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.

Read more in Wednesday’s The State.

-- Gina Smith

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