DETROIT – A new poll offers some insight on where Michigan voters stand in the state’s upcoming election for governor.
A WDIV/Detroit News poll asked voters about their thoughts on Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s job performance, as well as potential challengers to her re-election bid. Here are some of the findings:
Whitmer approval trending up after dip
Survey results show voters view Gov. Whitmer favorably by a margin of 47.6% favorable to 39.6% unfavorable. Whitmer is viewed favorably by Independent voters by a margin of 49.0% favorable to 32.9% unfavorable.
- 56.2% of Michigan voters approve of the job being done by Gretchen Whitmer as governor, compared to 38.7% who disapprove.
That’s an improvement for Whitmer from the Fall, when her approval rating was 48.3% and her disapproval was near 44%.
So what’s driving the improvement? Survey results show it’s Independent voters.
In September 2020, 51.2% of Independents disapproved of her performance. They now approve of her performance by a margin 62.3% approve to 27.9% disapprove. Her approval among independent voters has gone from -11% to +34.4% -- a 45-point reversal.
Notably, while Whitmer has 62.3% job approval among Independent voters, Joe Biden has only 39.4% job approval among independent voters, the WDIV/Detroit News survey found.
The 2022 race for governor
Gov. Whitmer’s re-election bid will face some challenges in this year’s race for the governor’s office.
WDIV/Detroit News poll results found 39.9% of voters said will definitely vote to re-elect her while 41.7% said they would vote for someone new -- 12.2% said it would depend on who was running against her.
The 12.2% that said it would depend who was running against her -- they break 38.4% Whitmer to 18.4% Craig, with 27.1% undecided.
How potential challengers stack up
Respondents were asked if they had heard of the name of four prominent announced Republican candidates for governor.
Gov. Whitmer holds a 48.6%-39.1% lead over James Craig, with 11.7% of voters remaining undecided. And Whitmer holds a nearly 15-point lead among Independent voters leading Craig 41.0%-26.2%.
Whitmer’s 9.5% lead is a strong advantage that puts her just shy of the crucial 50% mark. At this point, James Craig is the strongest of the four Republican contenders tested in this survey due to higher name identification.
Whitmer wins Black voters by a margin of 82.3%-7.6%, with 10.1% undecided. But among white voters, the two are statistically tied with Whitmer leading Craig 43.7%-43.4%.
In this survey Whitmer also polls better than Soldano at 49.% to 33.2%, better than Rinke at 49.6% to 33%, and much better than Dixon at 50.3% to 31%.
The Michigan Primary Election is scheduled for May 3, 2022.
The Glengariff Group, Inc. conducted a Michigan statewide survey of November 2022 likely general election voters. The 600 sample, live operator telephone survey was conducted on January 3-7, 2022 and has a margin of error of +/-4.0% with a 95% level of confidence. 25.0% of respondents were contacted via landline telephone. 75.0% of respondents were contacted via cell phone telephone. This survey was commissioned by WDIV Local 4 News and the Detroit News.