April 21, 2022

RALEIGH — Two-thirds of likely N.C. general election voters believe the economy is getting worse, according to the latest Civitas Poll. More than half of those polled believe President Joe Biden has contributed to the economic decline. 

The April 14-18 survey of 600 likely general election voters found 66% answering that the economy is getting worse. Just 20% believe the economy is getting better. Some 54% believe the Biden administration has worsened the economy, while 31% credit the president with improving the economy. 

Biden’s job approval stands at 36%, with 56% of likely voters registering disapproval. Both numbers are down slightly from January, when 38% approved of the president’s job performance and 57% disapproved. 

On the top foreign policy issue of the day, 45% of likely general election voters disapprove of Biden’s response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Meanwhile, 40% approve of the president’s response. 

Inflation topped the list of most important public policy issues for likely voters. From a list of 10 choices, 18% named inflation. Election integrity (14%), jobs and the economy (13%), taxes and government spending (10%), and health care (10%) rounded out the top five issues. 

While Biden continues to see a decline in poll numbers, fellow Democrat Gov. Roy Cooper saw improvement in the latest Civitas Poll. Cooper registered 46% job approval, compared to 42% disapproval. That compares to 44% approval and 47% disapproval in January. This month marked the first time since June 2021 that Cooper has registered higher approval than disapproval. 

Nonetheless, just 39% of likely general election voters support the governor’s executive order pushing for more zero-emission vehicles (ZEV). A plurality of 44% oppose the order. Just 3% of those surveyed own a ZEV today, and just 13% say they plan to buy one the next time they make a purchase. 

Rising gas prices have prompted 56% of likely voters to cut back on driving, while 41% say higher prices have not affected their driving habits. 

Republicans continue to make gains on the generic congressional and legislative election ballots. Without information about specific candidates, 52% say they prefer a Republican candidate for Congress, compared to 40% who prefer a Democrat. The GOP number is up three percentage points from November. 

Meanwhile, 51% say they prefer a GOP candidate for the N.C. legislature, with 41% supporting a Democrat. The Republican number is also three percentage points higher since November. 

In other election-related questions, 68% of likely voters support a voter ID requirement for in-person voting. Just 48% say they believe 2022 elections will be “free and fair.” Some 37% expect elections not to be free and fair, while 15% say they are unsure. 

Two-thirds (66%) of voters support a state constitutional provision banning felons from voting until they have completed all requirements set by law. A majority (54%) oppose a recent court ruling that would allow felons to vote if they have left prison but not completed their full sentences. 

Nearly two out of three voters (65%) believe the United States is on the wrong track, compared to 27% who think the country is moving in the right direction. That marks improvement from January, when 69% answered “wrong track” and 23% said “right direction.” 

Methodology: This probabilistic survey was conducted April 14–16 and 18, 2022, with 600 likely general election voters. It has a margin of error of ±3.95%. Known registered voters were interviewed via live phones and SMS. This survey was weighted to a likely general election voter universe.