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Wide-Ranging Poll Results
Wednesday, 22 July 2009

July 22--  Strategic Vision, LLC, a public relations and public affairs agency, announced the results of a three-day poll of 800 likely Georgia voters.  The poll has a margin of error of ±3 percentage points.  In the poll, 368 (46%) Republican voters were surveyed; with 328 (41%) Democratic voters surveyed; and 104 (13%) Independents and other party affiliation polled. 

When asked if they approved or disapproved of Governor Sonny Perdue’s job performance, 51% approved; 38% disapproved; and 11% were undecided.  Forty-eight percent of respondents approved of Senator Saxby Chambliss’ job performance; 39% disapproved; and 13% were undecided.  Senator Johnny Isakson had 54% approving of his job performance; 37% disapproving; and 9% undecided.

“Senator Isakson continues to be one of Georgia’s most popular elected officials with strong support among all political persuasions and looks in strong shape as he heads into the 2010 elections, said David E. Johnson, CEO of Strategic Vision, LLC.  “However one note of concern for him and this was also shown in the polling for Governor Perdue and Senator Chambliss is a slippage in support among voters who describe themselves as extremely conservative.  This reflects a trend that we have seen in other states where Republican elected officials are losing some support among strong conservatives of their own Party.”

The results of the poll showed that 40% of those polled approved of President Barack Obama’s overall job performance; with 52% disapproving; and 8% undecided.  When asked if they approved of the President’s handling of the economy, 39% approved; 53% disapproved; and 8% were undecided.  On the issue of Iraq, the poll found 48% approved of the President’s handling of the war; with 43% disapproving; and 9% undecided.   When asked if they approved of the President’s overall foreign policy, 46% approved; 43% disapproved; and 11% were undecided. 

“President Obama’s numbers have slipped dramatically since our June poll and that reflects a trend that we are seeing in other states, as concerns about the economy increase,” said Johnson.  “This is the first time that we have seen a majority of voters disapprove of his overall job performance and specifically his handling of the economy.  While some of this can be attributed to the Republican leaning of Georgia, the biggest drop in approval for the President has been among Independent voters.  This is again a trend that we are seeing in other states.  The question is will this be a permanent separation or if the economy improves will these voters float back to the President.”

When asked if they thought Georgia was headed in the right direction or wrong direction, 47% said right; 46% said wrong; and 7% were undecided.

“The number of Georgians who feel that the state is headed in the right direction has declined dramatically since the fall,” said Johnson.  “These are numbers that we usually see associated with a state like Ohio or Pennsylvania.  The economy is driving these numbers downward.”

When asked if voters approved or disapproved of the way Congress is handling its job, 18% approved; 69% disapproved; and 13% were undecided.

“Approval for Congress remains as it has been for a year very abysmal,” said Johnson.  “A large majority of Independents disapprove of Congress and this could potentially affect a race like Jim Marshall’s.”

When asked if they support or oppose Congress passing health care reform before its August recess, 31% supported; 54% opposed; and 15% were undecided.

When asked if they support or oppose, Congress passing health care reform before the end of the year, 44% supported; 49% opposed; and 7% were undecided.

When asked if they believe that all Americans should be required to have health insurance, 43% said yes; 48% said no; and 9% were undecided.

“While Republican opposition is strong to passage of health care reform and requiring all Americans to have health insurance, a surprising number of Independents also are opposed,” said Johnson.

When Republicans were asked their choice for Governor in 2010, the results were Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine 38%; Congressman Nathan Deal 16%; Secretary of State Karen Handel 9%; State Senator Eric Johnson 5%; Ray McBerry 3%; State Representative Austin Scott 2%; and 27% undecided.

“Oxendine continues to lead in this race and saw his support grow over the past month and now hovers right near the 50% mark,” said Johnson.  “He is drawing strong support among women aged 45 to 55 and among college educated professionals and is showing strong support in the Atlanta suburbs.  Additionally, he is very competitive in the strongholds of his key competitors.  Also encouraging for Oxendine is that he appears to be the second choice of Deal, Johnson, and Scott supporters.  

“Congressman Deal is emerging as the alternative candidate to Oxendine and his rise in the polls is dramatic considering his short time in the race,” continued Johnson.  While North Georgia remains a stronghold for him, he is polling very strong in Central and South Georgia. He also polls well among older voters.  His challenge will be to grow his base.  In this he appears to be competing with Senator Johnson.”

“Secretary Handel has lost support in the Atlanta suburbs and among female voters,” concluded Johnson.  This slippage in the polls along with her fundraising numbers pose a challenge for her that could increase as we draw closer to the primary. Of the other candidates, Senator Johnson despite his 5% in the poll seems the only other candidate with the potential to breakout, as he is the second choice of Handel supporters and because of his strong fundraising totals.”

When Democrats were asked their choice for Governor the results were former Governor Roy Barnes 46%; State Attorney General Thurbert Baker 31%; Former State Labor Commissioner, Ex-State Adjutant General Poythress 4%; House Minority Leader Dubose Porter 3%; and 16% undecided.

“While Barnes has a strong lead on the Democratic side, his support in our polling has declined each month since he officially entered the race,” said Johnson.  “The question is how serious is this slippage for Barnes and can any of the other candidates build upon this.”

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