AJC poll: Nathan Deal’s approval ratings are on the upswing

Gov. Nathan Deal's approval rating has tracked upward since the end of last year's legislative session, with a narrow majority of Georgia voters giving him favorable reviews in a new Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll.

About 52 percent of Georgia registered voters polled last week by the AJC said they approved of Deal’s performance. That held steady from the newspaper’s May poll and was up slightly from the 50 percent mark he tallied in January 2016.

The poll’s findings also suggest that some of the wounds within the GOP after his vetoes of “religious liberty” and campus carry legislation has healed.

The newspaper’s May poll showed GOP support for Deal had fallen from 73 percent in January to 58 percent. In the latest survey, the governor’s Republican support base was back up to 71 percent.

At the same time, Democratic support that had grown from 38 percent to 51 percent after the vetoes has plummeted back down to earth. This month’s poll showed that roughly 37 percent of state Democrats approved of Deal’s performance.

Meanwhile 54 percent of independents – a crucial voting bloc that often supports Republicans – gave Deal a solid review.

About one-quarter of voters, including a plurality of Democrats, disapprove of his performance. Roughly one-fifth don’t know or have no opinion.

As for Deal, he said he's keeping his gaze cast forward.

"I think Georgia is in a great position in a number of fronts and I want to keep it that way," the governor told the AJC in an interview. "We are moving forward and not looking behind."

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