North Carolina's Republican state politicians have been in for quite a few barbs lately for both their substantive actions -- rejecting an expansion of Medicaid coverage and lopping off unemployment benefits, for instance -- and the diversions into medical marijuana, topless women, opposums and cursive handwriting.
But both Gov. Pat McCrory and the General Assembly have seen higher approval ratings, according to a new poll by the free-market Civitas Institute.
The poll showed the state legislature's image improving from a 36 percent approval rating in September to a 40 percent approval rating in February.
McCrory's approval rating increased, too, from 41 percent in January to 46 percent now. Yet the biggest shift in opinion came in the form of a big jump in the percentage of those who aren't happy with the job he is doing: 11 percent unfavorable in January and 28 percent now. Fewer are up in the air: 26 percent don't know or are undecided about the governor, compared to 48 percent in January.
The Civitas Poll of 600 registered voters was taken Feb. 21, 24 and 25, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent. Voters interviewed had to have cast ballots in at least one of the past two general elections or were newly registered since Nov. 3.