The latest Quinnipiac University poll numbers are in and they are not good for Connecticut’s first-term Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. The governor’s latest approval rating, 43 percent, is down two points since October. That’s right, down, after Newtown, when the combative governor displayed a sensitive side in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy. He’s never gotten above 45 percent approval rating. Worse, 48 percent of unaffiliated voters disapprove of the job he is doing. Even Democrats have problems with him. Normally, a Democrat in office scores in the 70 or even 80 percentile range, but the first Democratic Party governor in more than two decades earns only a 63 percent approval from members of his own party.
Gun Control Telling
The numbers on gun control are especially, instructive, perhaps an indication voters have tuned out this governor, who pushed on state residents, the largest tax hike in history two years ago. Just 41 percent of those polled, say they approve of the way Malloy is handling gun policy, 38 percent disapprove and 21 percent don’t know.
This is fascinating, because the Quinnipiac Poll was centered around gun control policy, and most everybody surveyed had an opinion. The vast majority demanded stricter gun control. Curiously, people in huge numbers, demanded what Malloy is proposing, yet the governor could barely score above 40 percent approval on his gun control policy. That is a sure sign of a tune out.
Throw in the fact Malloy makes it a point to be on the evening news daily, does numerous radio interviews, even on rock stations, and seems to be traveling everywhere, and it could be Connecticut is experiencing Malloy overload.
Then there is the credibility issue. During Business Day at the Legislative Office in Hartford, when Malloy promised to balance the state budget without tax hikes or not exceed the mandated spending cap, the audience expressed skepticism.
Now the governor is launching a “listening tour,” visiting municipalities around the state to get public input and gauge public opinion. Except, at his first stop in Middletown, it seemed the governor did most of the talking. Not to mention, the one-hour “community forum” was tightly controlled, with attendees being asked to submit questions in advance, and the topics then chosen, before the forum began. That doesn’t sound like a listening tour.
One Term Governor?
From poll numbers to policy to personality, the story line does not bode well for the third-year Connecticut chief executive. Lacking the charisma of an Obama, Malloy, even in deep, blue Connecticut, could very well be a one-term governor.