* From the Paul Simon Institute’s poll of southern Illinoisans…
Almost 80 percent of registered voters in the region think the state and the nation are headed in the wrong direction. Fewer than 15 percent think Illinois and the U.S. are on the right track.
“These results probably reflect some of Illinois ’ current conflicts. Most polls show that more people feel their state is doing better than the nation. Not here. ” said John Jackson, a visiting professor at the Institute. […]
Only 37.4 percent approve of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s performance in office, while 50.7 percent disapprove. About one in eight ( 11.9 percent ) had no opinion about the Republican chief executive.
Senator Mark Kirk’s job approval rating is 30.4 percent, with 22.9 percent disapproving. A plurality of voters in the region – 46.6 percent – don’t know how they feel about the GOP lawmaker.
Senator Richard Durbin has approval ratings that exceed his disapprovals , but not by much. Half ( 50.6 percent ) approve of the Democrat’ s performance and a third (33.5 percent) disapprove. There are 16 percent who don’t know.
* Who was polled…
The Simon Institute’s Southern Illinois Poll interviewed 401 registered voters across the 18 southernmost counties in Illinois. The counties are: Alexander, Franklin, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Massac, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Randolph, Saline, Union, Washington, White and Williamson.
It has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that if we were to conduct the survey 100 times, in 95 of those instances the results would vary by no ore than plus or minus 4.9 percentage points from the results obtained here.
“Voters here have been in a bad mood and they continue to be,” said David Yepsen, director of the Institute.
“The only surprise is how many people don’t have an opinion about Senator Kirk. For a statewide Republican incumbent to have such ambivalent ratings down here isn’t a good sign for him as he heads into a tough re-election campaign. He needs to be running well in this area to offset Democratic strengths elsewhere in the state,” he said.
Charlie Leonard, one of the Institute’s visiting professors supervising the poll, said “though Democrats and Republicans are evenly distributed in our southern Illinois sample, this is still a conservative area, and one might have thought of it as fertile ground for Gov. Rauner. For his approval ratings to be ‘upside down’ in southern Illinois this early in his administration may not bode well for the pro-business agenda he’s been trying to push.”
Charlie is right. These are not good numbers at all.
Rauner won all of those counties last year, some by as much as 2-1 or better.
And Kirk? Yikes. He’s almost an unknown quantity. The only elected official doing better than expected in this poll is Durbin.