The Meredith Poll has been around for five years, and political science professor Dr. David McLennan has been handling the collection of data and analyzing it as the director. He hopes to gain an understanding of North Carolinians’ opinions on a variety of topics, including social, policy and cultural issues. One of the more interesting topics he and the poll surveyed was the gender-pay gap and women in leadership positions. The poll uses both online and telephone polling because it is a challenge to get a reasonable amount of respondents from just the telephone, and telephone polling is less likely to reach young audiences and people of color, says McLennan.
During this process, students are involved in all aspects; Dr. McLennan explains, “We have a group of students who help write out the questions in the POL-322 class, we have the students calling and collecting the data and we have classes that analyze these data after collecting it.” Dr. McLennan says that “one of the main reasons that polling is so important nowadays is because the world is rapidly changing. It is more important now than ever to have a grasp to see the public opinion on policies and politics in a world where politics is evolving ever so quickly.” Many sources, from local newspapers to MSNBC, look at the Meredith Poll to see how North Carolinians are feeling about current or future policies. The Meredith Poll also has an important impact on our student experience as well as the wider North Carolina culture. If you are interested in learning more about the Poll, click here.
So, what does the poll tell us?
There are significant gaps in how satisfied North Carolinians are with the “directions of the country,” Latest Meredith Poll Complete By Sofia Gomez, Podcasting Director, and Mimi Mays, Editor in Chief and partisan affiliation is the clearest indicator of that political attitude.
When asked if they were “satisfied or dissatisfied with the way things are going in the U.S.,” Democrats report being highly dissatisfied, while most Republicans are satisfied. “This should come as no surprise, given the strong partisan gaps about President Trump,” reports the Poll.
By examining Poll data from the past four years, we can also see that North Carolinians have never been more polarized in their opinion of the American political landscape – 2020 has yielded the largest gap between Republican and Democrat satisfaction in Poll history.
By Sofia Gomez, Podcasting Director, and Mimi Mays, Editor in Chief