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Shocking news about Governor LePage

To go directly to the findings of the Critical Insights tracking poll, click on the imageThat's overstating it a bit, but the results of a new poll are shocking to me given the recent spate of bad press for the governor.

Critical Insights tracking poll reports that of those folks who think Maine is heading in the right direction, 46% believe that is because Governor LePage is "doing a good job," while "improving economy/jobs" is the next reason cited, at 24%. For those who believe the state is heading in the wrong direction, only 37% blame the governor, followed by 29% who blame the bad economy and a lack of jobs.

I spoke to MaryEllen FitzGerald, president of Critical Insights, about the numbers. She told me the Governor's approval rating has dropped just 4 percentage points, from 47% to 43%, since the same measurement was taken in the Fall of 2011. She agrees with me that the governor’s fairly stable favorability rating is surprising, given an onslaight of derisive editorial condemnations like this one by columnist like Bill Nemitz, and the ample negative press coverage about budget cuts and LePage’s use of the line item veto.

The poll was conducted from May 2 through May 7, so only some of those polled knew about LePage’s advice on Sunday to “all you able-bodied people out there: Get off the couch and get yourself a job.” Would his ratings have been even higher if all those polled had seen that news coverage? Impossible to say without hard data. But the poll does make you wonder, and raises the question of whether LePage’s core economic messages are resonating with Maine people, even if the media doesn’t like his less-than-elegant way of delivering them.

The poll was released to the press on Friday afternoon, so everyone will probably be reading about it in Saturday's papers. Members of the media: FitzGerald is available for comment at 207-772-7011.

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Reader Comments (2)

I am not so surprised by these results. The media has consistently shown bias against Governor LePage but the people who elected and now support him are well grounded in common sense. And, while the various special interest groups have the money and manpower to constantly feed the press who push their agenda, Maine's hard working folks have to spend their 40 plus hours a week earning a living and paying their taxes. However, these are the folks who are supporting the accomplishments of the LePage administration and will not easily slip back into ways of deficit spending and restrictive regulations preventing Maine from realizing more prosperity. These are the folks that recognize that what Governor has been doing is absolutely essential to solving out state government problems. Thank God we got a super majority when we did or we'd all be suffering a lot more down the line.

May 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark Wellman

Good observation, Mark. I wonder if the flurry of news about Maine Turnpike Association, atrocious conditions at Section 8 housing overseen by MSHA, etc., just has people plain fed up, and maybe the media's not tuned in.

May 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterMark Robinson

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