After nearly a year on the job, 70 percent of likely Oklahoma voters approve of the way Governor Mary Fallin is doing her job, a recent SoonerPoll.com study reveals.
Results from the poll indicate that 69.3 percent of respondents approve, 16.2 percent disapprove, and 14.5 percent either do not have an opinion or do not know Mary Fallin. The study was fielded between November 17 and December 6, 2011.
Although this is the first time SoonerPoll has released the governor’s approval ratings since she took office last January, it is not the first time the question was polled. Results from two previous studies show that Fallin held a 63.7 percent approval rating in May before dropping to just 58.1 percent in July.
November’s numbers are a dramatic improvement over July numbers, which followed the ending of the legislative session. The 2011 legislative session marked the first time in state history that a GOP governor presided over a large GOP majority house and senate.
Fallin’s 69.3 percent approval is still slightly less than Former Governor Brad Henry’s final approval rating of 70.8 percent in January of 2011. Despite his political affiliation and his tendency to take a stand against popular conservative initiatives in the state, Henry enjoyed remarkably high approval rating throughout his terms as governor.
In Fallin’s first year in office she has already had a lower approval rating than Henry, whose approval never slipped below 62.2 percent at any time during the five years SoonerPoll tracked his approval.
Further crosstab analysis reveals that 77.7 percent of Republicans, 69 percent of Independents and 62.4 percent of Democrats all approve of the way the governor is doing her job. Similarly, a majority of conservative, moderate and liberal respondents approve of the governor.
Before being elected governor in 2010, Fallin served as the congresswoman for Oklahoma’s fifth district. However, when results are broken down by congressional district, only 69.5 percent of respondents in district 5 approve of the governor, compared to 72.5 percent approval in the district 1 and 72 percent in district 4.
Though Fallin received slightly less support from the congressional district she once represented, she received 72.3 percent approval in the Oklahoma City Metro Surrounding Area (MSA). By comparison, 68 percent of respondents in the Tulsa MSA and 68.4 percent of respondents in the Rest of State MSA approve of the governor.
SoonerPoll.com, Oklahoma’s public opinion pollster, commissioned and conducted the scientific study using live interviewers by telephone of 512 likely voters from Nov. 17 – Dec. 6. The study has a margin of error of ± 4.3 percent.