MI-Gov: The Buyer’s Remorse Keeps Spreading

Public Policy Polling (3/18-20, “Michigan voters,” no trendlines):

Virg Bernero (D): 47

Rick Snyder (R): 45

Undecided: 8

(MoE: ±4.4%)

These “do-over” questions from Public Policy Polling are, of course, off in hypothetical-land and don’t have an immediate application (other than to encourage high-information partisan types like us to find a convenient desk and start pounding our heads on it). But they are certainly remarkable, and starting to put together, brick by brick, a real picture of the pendulum swinging back incredibly rapidly among fickle midwestern swing voters. Today, it’s Michigan’s turn, where they find that if the 2010 gubernatorial election were re-done, Democratic mayor of Lansing Virg Bernero would edge out Rick Snyder.

In a way, that’s even more startling reversal of fortune than PPP’s previous results in Wisconsin and Ohio, as Snyder ran as a centrist and superficially reasonable guy, instead of an out-and-proud jackass like John Kasich and Scott Walker, and wound up winning by 18 points instead of squeaking by. (Although the composition of the electorate seems to have changed a lot since 2010, suggesting a lot of Democrats sat on their hands that year and are now asking themselves why… PPP’s electorate went only 49-43 for Snyder, with 8% didn’t vote/don’t remember.)

The problem for Snyder is that he isn’t governing the way he campaigned; 36% are now saying he’s “too conservative,” and that has dragged his overall approval rate down to 33/50… one of the shortest honeymoons ever, as now he’s in almost as bad a shape as Jennifer Granholm was when she left office. Snyder’s on the wrong end of public opinion on all the prominent policy questions: there’s 49/37 support for a constitutional amendment guaranteeing collective bargaining rights, 59/32 support for collective bargaining for public employees, and 32/50 opposition for Snyder’s probably-unconstitutional attempt to take over and dismantle faltering municipalities. The one bit of good news that Snyder can take away from this: he’s recall-eligible after only six months in office, but voters are leaning against that, with 38% in support and 49% against.

65 thoughts on “MI-Gov: The Buyer’s Remorse Keeps Spreading”

  1. They say they only went for Snyder 49-43, but they also say they only went for Obama 51-43. Both won by nearly 20 points! This can’t possibly be true unless they really oversampled McCain/Bernero (heh) voters or somehow managed to avoid any Obama/Snyder voters. I think it’s more likely that some people selectively “forget” who they voted for or are refusing to admit voting for an incumbent they no longer approve of.  

  2. And those like them from other states don’t serve as a wake-up call then nothing ever will. Vote dammit. Else stop your belly-aching.

  3. Granted on a robopoll in the heat of political emotion people will say just about anything, as illustrated by how many Republicans answered “yes” when PPP asked in some polls the previous cycle whether Obama is the anti-Christ.  In that vein, I think if these same poll respondents this time actually had to cast a real vote yet again between Snyder and Bernero, I doubt Bernero would do nearly this well.

    That said, Snyder seemed to be on the moon in popularity, and on the way to long-term untouchability, and it’s just stunning to me that he falls this far this fast.

    I’m very heartened by seeing how much support there really is for unions across the upper Midwest.  It appears to truly have been a sleeping giant, with people taking for granted unions being there as a positive influence but shrugging off the long-term drip, drip, drip of attacks against them.  Now they see some dramatic stuff done much more conspicuously, and they finally realize they can’t shrug it off anymore.

    I hope we can harness this into recall wins in Wisconsin and a referendum win in Ohio later this year.  If we can get some wins in that vein, it’s great momentum for 2012.

  4. Was there a Strickland/Kasich rematch poll done somewhere? I did see Kasich’s approvals are underwater, but nothing on the revote question.  

  5. All of these govs are not up until 2014 and they are doing the ‘piss off’ stuff first.  They are working with big GOP majorities as well – yea, some in the legislatures will be up in 2012 and they might be a bit timid, but the govs are all thinking that in three years time, no one will remember this sort of thing and will only care how the state is doing.

  6. Michigan is a brutal state, politically, especially over this decade.  Living here, I can tell you that you won’t find a more pessimistic and fickle populous because of the way the economy has been.

    I have to say, though, that I’m even surprised how quickly things have changed.  Things haven’t been this volatile in my lifetime.

    BTW, people tend to forget or not know that Michigan had one of its lowest gubernatorial turnouts in something like 20-25 years last year.  Stupid Democrats sat at home, while we let independents and Republicans hand Snyder the governor’s office without much of a fight.

Comments are closed.