Politics & Government

Elon poll: Hagan holds slight edge on Tillis

A new Elon University Poll shows Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan with an edge over Republican Thom Tillis.

The poll released Thursday shows 44.7 percent of likely voters back Hagan while 40.7 percent support Tillis. The margin of error is 3.74 percentage points.

However, two other polls released this week, by NBC News/Marist and High Point University/Survey USA, showed the candidates tied in the nation’s most expensive U.S. Senate race.

Hagan leads by a single point in Real Clear Politics’ average of recent polls.

The Elon poll was conducted Oct. 21-25.

Unlike most surveys, the poll didn’t include the name of the third Senate candidate on the ballot: Libertarian Sean Haugh. He got 7 percent in the NBC poll and 5  percent in the High Point survey.

Elon asked voters instead if they support “someone else.” Six percent of likely voters took that option.

Only 40 percent of likely voters approved the job of President Barack Obama, suggesting that could help Tillis, who has campaigned as much against the president as against Hagan.

And only 35 percent of likely voters believe Obama’s signature accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, will make health care better in North Carolina.

But only 30 percent of likely voters approve of the General Assembly. Hagan has sought to tie Tillis, the speaker of the state House, to unpopular legislative policies.

The poll also found:

• Only 37 percent of likely voters approve of the job of Gov. Pat McCrory, while 47 percent disapprove.

• Congress fares even worse: less than 12 percent approve its job performance.

• A reversal in support of gay marriage.

In September 45 percent of likely voters favored it, while 43 percent opposed it. In October, after a federal court cleared the way for gay marriage in North Carolina, 50 percent opposed gay marriage; only 38 percent supported it.

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