Governor Glenn Youngkin has a 50 percent job approval rating but Democrats are slightly ahead on the generic ballot in a new poll released by Christopher Newport University’s Wason Center.

“When asked about the direction of the Commonwealth, 42 percent say Virginia is headed in the right direction, while 40 percent say the wrong direction. 50 percent of Virginians approve of the job Governor Youngkin is doing while 40 percent disapprove and 9 percent indicate they don’t know,” the center reported Wednesday. “Differences are largely along partisan lines with 72 percent of Republican registered voters saying Virginia is heading in the right direction, compared to 20 percent of Democrats and 39 percent of Independents. On Governor Youngkin’s job approval, 90 percent of Republican registered voters say they approve, while 72 percent of Democrats disapprove and Independents are fairly split (48 percent approve, 41 percent disapprove, 11 percent don’t know.”

For Youngkin, that’s an improvement since February, the last time CNU released a poll, when Youngkin’s approval was at 41 percent versus 43 percent disapproval. But since then, polls from other organizations have found Youngkin’s favorability to be higher, with Roanoke College reporting a 55 percent approval rating at the end of August. The latest CNU poll was conducted September 18 through October 7, with 740 interviews of Virginia registered voters, and a 4.5 percent margin of error.

Although President Joe Biden’s approval is low at 39 percent, Democrats are slightly ahead on the generic ballot, with 46 percent saying they’d support Democrats in the upcoming election, and 40 percent saying they’d support Republicans. The Inflation Reduction Act’s healthcare and environment provisions are popular, but a 55 percent majority dislike the act’s increased funding for the IRS.

Another key finding from the poll is that Republicans and Democrats are focused on different issues in the November election.

“Among Republicans, the top issues facing the country are the economy/inflation (53 percent), immigration (11 percent) and crime (7 percent). For Democrats the top issues are climate change (17 percent), racial inequality (16 percent), and abortion (15 percent), the poll results state.

“The results of this survey point to the chaotic and uncertain nature of the upcoming midterm elections,” Wason Center Research Director Dr. Rebecca Bromley-Trujillo said. “While traditionally midterm elections are a referendum on the president and the state of the economy, the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade and recent extreme weather events have energized Democrats around abortion and climate change.”


Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and The Star News NetworkThis article originally appeared in The Virginia Star. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the positions of The Republican Standard. Republished with permission.