A shift by women voters helps give Gov. Tom Corbett a 44 – 36 percent job approval, his first noticeable boost in job approval since he took office in January, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday.
These latest results are a jump from Gov. Corbett’s 39 – 38 percent approval rating in a June 14 survey by Quinnipiac University. Women give Corbett a narrowly negative 37 – 41 percent approval, compared to negative 30 – 43 percent mark in June. Men approve 51 – 31 percent, compared to 48 – 34 percent in June.
Pennsylvania voters like their governor as a person 48 – 15 percent, with 37 percent still undecided. But voters say 43 – 40 percent that they don’t like Corbett’s policies.
Voters disapprove 45 – 41 percent of the way Corbett is handling the state budget, but that is a better score than many governors are getting during these difficult economic times.
“Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett, who had a 39 percent job approval in each of our first three polls this year, might be seeing some daylight,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “He’s doing better than his Republican neighbors, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who had a negative 35 – 50 percent approval in our July 20 survey, and New Jersey Gov. Christopher Christie, who had a negative 44 – 47 percent score June 21. Both of those governors suffer from big negatives among women voters.”
Marcellus Shale Drilling/Fees
Pennsylvania voters say 59 – 32 percent that the economic benefits of drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale outweigh environmental concerns, compared to 63 – 20 percent support in Quinnipiac University’s June 14 survey.
The poll also found support for drilling is 79 – 16 percent among Republicans and 55 – 35 percent among independent voters. Democrats split 44 – 45 percent.
Voters support 63 – 28 percent, including 53 – 38 percent among Republicans, a new tax on companies drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale.
By an even larger 78 – 17 percent, voters support a proposed fee on drilling companies, with proceeds used to reimburse local communities for the impact of drilling. Support is high among all groups and in every region of the state.
“By almost 2-1 margins, Pennsylvania voters remain convinced of the benefits of tapping the natural gas reserves in the Marcellus Shale,” Malloy said. “And by overwhelming margins, they want to tap the financial resources of the companies doing the drilling.”
Women in Government
There should be more women in high elected office, 51 percent of Pennsylvania voters say, while 5 percent say there should be fewer women and 31 percent say the number of women is about right. Among women voters, 56 percent want more women in office, while 45 percent of men want more women elected.
Pennsylvania voters personally hope 63 – 22 percent that the U.S. has a woman president in their lifetime. Hoping for a woman president are 67 percent of women and 58 percent of men. And voters expect 70 – 22 percent that there will be a woman president in their lifetime.
Male officials are more likely than women officials to have sex scandals, voters say 71 – 1 percent, with 25 percent saying there is not much difference. These strong attitudes are shared by all groups and in every region of the state.
There is not much difference between man and women officials on who would have the right priorities, 72 percent of voters say. Women officials would be better problem solvers, voters say 28 – 6 percent, with 63 percent saying there is not much difference.
“Pennsylvania voters say we need more women in high political office. We can’t agree that they would be better problem solvers or would have better priorities, but almost everyone agrees there would be fewer sex scandals,” Malloy said.
More complete poll results are available online.