By Melissa Daniels | PA Independent
HARRISBURG — Gov. Tom Corbett hit an all-time low this week.
Thirty-six percent of voters approve of the way the first-term governor and former Pennsylvania attorney general is doing his job, compared with 47 percent who disapprove, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.
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But these figures don’t bother Corbett — he doesn’t read polls, he said. “If I was looking at the polls, I wouldn’t be doing some of the things I’m doing, would I?” Corbett said.
The poll queried 997 registered voters from June 5-10 with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. Corbett's approval rating is down from an all-time high of 50 percent based on a September Quinnipiac poll, which surveyed 1,370 voters.
Corbett had “a heck of start,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, especially compared with other first-term Republican governors in Ohio and Florida. “His approval ratings were high. They have precipitously dropped in the last nine months, corresponding in time to a budget which brought cuts to education and other services,” Malloy said.
Of the Democrats polled, 68 percent disapprove of Corbett's time in office compared with 26 percent of Republicans and 45 percent of independents.
Corbett also has a better reputation with men, with 40 percent approving, compared with 32 percent of women approving. Corbett’s not the sole target of Pennsylvania’s dissatisfaction with its state government. The state Legislature has an approval rating of 27 percent, crawling toward its all-time low of 25 percent in a May 2010 Quinnipiac poll.
Only 11 percent of respondents said Pennsylvania's economy has improved since Corbett took office, but within that group, 66 percent gave him credit for the improvements.
Of the 33 percent who say the state's economy is in worse shape, 63 percent put the blame on Corbett over President Barack Obama.
Other points the poll found about where Pennsylvania voters stand on the presidential election included:
- Obama leads presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney with 46 percent to 40 percent, alongside 2 percent who say they would vote for someone else and 3 percent who say they wouldn’t vote at all.
- Forty-nine percent of voters say Mitt Romney would do a better job repairing the nation’s economy, compared with 41 percent who say the same about Obama.
- Seventy-seven percent say Obama is a likeable person, compared with 58 percent who say the same about Romney