Large majority of Virginians approve of how Northam is handling the COVID-19 crisis
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 14, 2020
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Farrah Stone, Ph.D.
More than three-quarters of Virginians (76%) approve of the way Gov. Ralph Northam is handling the coronavirus crisis, with 40% strongly approving, according to a new statewide poll conducted by the Center for Public Policy at the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Northam enjoys a high level of approval regardless of party affiliation, with about 7-in-10 Republicans and independents strongly or somewhat approving (68% and 70% respectively). Nine-in-10 Democrats approve, with 55% strongly approving of Northam’s handling of the crisis. Regionally, Tidewater is more likely to strongly approve with 55%, while in other regions between 33% and 39% strongly approve.
Among the poll’s key findings:
- Virginians are almost evenly split about how well President Trump is handling the COVID-19 crisis.Fifty percent of Virginians strongly or somewhat approve of how Trump is handling the crisis, while 48% strongly or somewhat disapprove.
- Overall, Virginians think the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is prepared to handle the COVID-19 crisis. Sixty-one percent think the CDC is very or somewhat prepared to handle a widespread coronavirus outbreak, with a plurality of 43% thinking it’s somewhat prepared.
- Biden leads Trump by 10 percentage points among likely voters in Virginia. When likely voters were asked how they would vote if the election were held today, 51% said Joe Biden, while 41% said Donald Trump. Note: The survey was conducted before Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign.
- Being the most qualified candidate is more important to likely voters than definitely having a female vice presidential candidate. Respondents are more likely to volunteer that they prefer the most qualified candidate regardless of gender (43%) when asked whether the Democratic presidential candidate should choose a woman as a running mate.
The poll, a telephone survey of 812 adults living in Virginia, was conducted between March 25 and April 8. It has an estimated margin of error of 4.51 percentage points for all adults sampled, and 5.68 percentage points for likely voters. The poll also provides additional insight into Virginians’ opinion of how the COVID-19 crisis is being handled on a national level as well as a snapshot of the 2020 presidential election in Virginia.
The full news release with poll results and methodology can be found here: https://oppo.vcu.edu/policy-poll/.
ABOUT THE WILDER SCHOOL AND THE CENTER FOR PUBLIC POLICY
The L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, named for the nation’s first African-American elected governor, is a top-50 nationally ranked public affairs school. Located blocks from the state Capitol in Richmond, Virginia, the school enrolls about 1,000 undergraduates and 400 graduate students in eight academic programs. The Wilder School’s 10,000-plus alumni work across the public, private and nonprofit sectors. Drawing on the wide-ranging expertise of Wilder School faculty, the Center for Public Policy's programs provide diverse public-facing services including leadership development and training, economic and policy impact analysis, survey insights and program evaluation to clients in state and local governments, nonprofit organizations, businesses and the general public, across Virginia and beyond. For more, please visit https://wilder.vcu.edu/center-for-public-policy/.