The Daily Tar Heel

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Tuesday November 30th

View from the Hill

Senate candidates aren't winning over voters of faith, poll finds

As the November election draws near, it seems both Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., and Speaker of the House Thom Tillis have some work to do to reach faith-driven voters — who make up one-third of the North Carolina electorate.

A poll by American Insights on Sept. 22 found that 95 percent of faith-driven voters in the state believe they have a responsibility to vote, but only 26 percent say Hagan represents them well and 38 percent believe that Tillis does.

A faith-driven voter is defined as a voter who identifies as a Christian and say that their faith significantly influences their voting decisions.

“I don’t think it's too late in the game. As a third of the North Carolina electorate, there are surely more than enough faith-driven voters to swing the Senate race to the person who is able to connect with them,” said Pearce Godwin, director of American Insights.

Two-thirds of the voters polled identified as Christians, and half of the Christian voters said that their faith plays a major role in their decision making, including how they vote.

“North Carolina has historically been called a part of the Bible Belt. In fact, it's been called the buckle of the Bible Belt, and so it’s a state where faith plays a major role in the lives of all of its citizens. And that certainly holds for its electorate as well,” Godwin said.

Out of the 600 registered voters polled by American Insights, 42 percent were Democrats, 31 percent Republicans and 27 percent were unaffiliated.

state@dailytarheel.com

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