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Wisconsin voters sour on state economy, direction, legislature

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(The Center Square) – Voters in Wisconsin have a dim view of both the state and the national economy and have an even worse view of state lawmakers.

The latest Marquette University Law School Poll shows most voters in Wisconsin say the state is on the wrong track, and say they are struggling.

“A majority of Democrats see the state headed in the right direction, while a majority of Republicans and independents say the state is on the wrong track,” pollsters wrote. “A majority of registered voters say the state of Wisconsin is on the wrong track, 59%, while 41% say it is headed in the right direction.”

Those numbers are slightly worse than the last Marquette Poll in January when 57% of people said Wisconsin was on the wrong track, and 42% said it was headed in the right direction.

The economy is likely one reason why voters are sour on the state.

The poll found that 66% of Wisconsin voters think the national economy is either not so good or poor. Just 5% think the national economy is excellent, and another 28% say it’s good.

Voters are a bit more optimistic about the Wisconsin economy but not by much.

Overall, 56% of voters said the Wisconsin economy is not so good or poor. Six percent of voters said the state economy is excellent, while 48% said it’s good.

“[Voters’] family financial situation is seen by respondents as a little worse in April than in January,” pollsters noted. “Among registered voters, 45% say they are living comfortably. That is a 4-point drop from January, with a 2-point increase each for ‘just getting by’ to 40% and ‘struggling’ to 15%.”

Democrats in Wisconsin tend to think the state’s economy is good, while Republicans tend to say it’s not so good.

The poll notes that 59% of independents in the state say the Wisconsin economy is either not so good or poor.

But Wisconsin’s economy is not being laid at the feet of Gov. Tony Evers.

The MU poll says Evers’ approval rating is essentially unchanged. Fifty-two percent of voters approve of the job he’s doing, compared to 44% who disapprove. Evers’ approval rating was 51% in January, and 53% last fall.

The Wisconsin legislature favorability rating also remains unchanged, Just 34% of voters had a favorable view of lawmakers, the same as January. The liberal-majority Supreme Court is also unchanged with a 46% approval rating. Though that’s down from 51% in the fall of 2023.

The latest poll was conducted April 3-10, 2024, interviewing 814 Wisconsin registered voters, with a margin of error of +/-4.8 percentage points. The sample contains 736 likely voters, those who say they are absolutely certain to vote in November, with a margin of error of +/-5 percentage points.

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