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VOTE 2010: Civitas Poll - 16-point flip toward Republicans on state legislative generic ballot since 2008 elections


RALEIGH, NC (NEWS RELEASE) – Since the 2008 elections, the North Carolina General Assembly has seen a 16-point flip in support from Democrats to Republicans on the legislative generic ballot, according to a new poll released today by the Civitas Institute.

According to the live caller poll of 600 likely voters, 44 percent of voters said they would be voting Republican if the election for the North Carolina State Legislature were held today. Thirty-seven percent of voters said they would vote Democratic, 5 percent said neither, and 14 percent said they are not sure.

This represents a 16 percent change in support for Democrats on the generic ballot since Civitas’ October 2008 poll when Democrats led by a 46 percent-37 percent margin (+9 to -7).

“The tremendous swing away from Democrats that we’ve been seeing this election cycle is continuing right up until voters make their selection at the polls,” said Civitas Institute Senior Legislative Analyst Chris Hayes. “Voters’ discontent with the president and Congress are being reflected in their sentiment toward Democratic legislative candidates this year.”

Furthermore, unaffiliated voters have flipped from a 37 percent-29 percent margin in their support for Democrats in 2008 to supporting Republicans in 2010 by 32 percent-26 percent (-11 Dem., +3 Rep.). Since 2008, Democratic support for their own party dropped 6 percent to a 69 percent-14 percent margin (2008: 75 percent-12 percent). Conversely, Republicans solidified their base voters from a 76 percent-12 percent margin in 2008 to 87 percent-3 percent this year.

“The most notable change here is the drastic flip in support among unaffiliated voters, who resembled Democratic voters in 2008, are now resembling Republicans,” added Hayes.

The Civitas Poll is the only monthly live-caller poll of critical issues facing North Carolina. For more information on Civitas polling see

Full text of question:

“If the election for the North Carolina State Legislature were held today, would you be voting: Republican or Democrat?”

Democratic - 37%

Republican - 44%

Neither - 5%

Not Sure - 14%

This poll of 600 likely general election voters in North Carolina was conducted October 18-20, 2010 by Tel Opinion Research of Alexandria, Virginia. All respondents were part of a fully representative sample of registered voters in North Carolina. For purposes of this study, voters we interviewed had to have voted in either the 2004, 2006 or 2008 general elections or were newly registered voters since 2008.

The confidence interval associated with a sample of this size is such that: 95 percent of the time, results from 600 interviews (registered voters) will be within +-4% of the “True Values.” True Values refer to the results obtained if it were possible to interview every person in North Carolina who had voted in either the 2004, 2006 or 2008 general elections or were newly registered voters since 2008.

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