December 15, 2016 - Obama Gets Highest Grade Ever In Virginia, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Voters Divided On Flag-Burning Quinnipiac University Polling Logo
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Virginia voters approve 59 - 38 percent of the job President Barack Obama is doing, his highest grade ever in the Old Dominion and one of his highest grades ever in the states surveyed by the Quinnipiac University Poll.

President Obama's previous high approval in Virginia is a 52 - 44 percent grade in a January 10, 2013, survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll, as he started his second term.

Approval is 97 - 1 percent among Democrats and 58 - 37 percent among independent voters. Republicans disapprove 84 - 14 percent.

Virginia voters are optimistic, 55 - 40 percent, about the next four years with Donald Trump as president. Men are optimistic 63 - 32 percent, while women are divided 48 - 47 percent. Optimism by age group is highest, 60 - 39 percent, among voters 18 to 34 years old, and lowest, 51 - 45 percent, among voters 35 to 49 years old.

Despite the optimism, Trump gets a negative 39 - 53 percent favorability rating. Men are negative 42 - 48 percent and women are negative 36 - 58 percent. White voters are divided with 48 percent favorable and 45 percent unfavorable. Non-white voters are negative 19 - 72 percent.

"There may be no political figure in the history of Virginia who is more responsible for the state's political transition from solid Republican to a swing state with a Democratic lean in presidential elections than President Barack Obama," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"He leaves office with strongly positive approval ratings. President Obama not only carried the state twice fairly comfortably, but also leaves office with a model for future Democratic White House nominees on how to carry the state.

"The question now is whether the Democrats can continue their winning streak in the Old Dominion by electing a second consecutive governor?" Brown added.

Virginia voters approve 62 - 22 percent of the job U.S. Sen. Mark Warner is doing. Warner gets a split 42 - 42 percent approval rating from Republicans.

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine gets a 58 - 32 percent job approval rating.

Flag-Burning

Virginia voters are divided on the issue of flag-burning as a form of political protest, as 48 percent say it should be legal and 47 percent say it should be illegal.

There are deep partisan, age and gender divisions:
  • Flag-burning should be legal, Democrats say 61 - 33 percent and independent voters say 55 - 41 percent. Republicans say 70 - 28 percent that flag-burning should be illegal.
  • Women say 51 - 44 percent that flag-burning should be against the law, but men say 53 - 43 percent that it should be legal.
  • Flag-burning should be legal, voters 18 to 34 years old say 53 - 44 percent and voters 35 to 49 years old say 54 - 40 percent. It should be illegal, voters 50 to 64 years old say 50 - 46 percent and voters over 65 years old say 56 - 41 percent.
  • White and non-white voters are evenly divided and virtually identical.
Virginia voters oppose 62 - 34 percent amending the U.S. Constitution to make flag- burning illegal. The only listed group to support such an amendment are Republicans, 52 - 46 percent.

"Virginians clearly understand the difference between passing a law and changing the U.S. Constitution. They are split down the middle when it comes to outlawing flag-burning as a legal method of protest. But almost two-thirds oppose amending the Constitution to do so," Brown said.

From December 6 - 11, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,098 Virginia voters with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points. Live interviewers call landlines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa, Colorado, North Carolina, Georgia and the nation as a public service and for research.

Visit poll.qu.edu or www.facebook.com/quinnipiacpoll

Call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter @QuinnipiacPoll.

11. Is your opinion of Donald Trump favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Favorable            39%    86%     4%    34%    42%    36%    38%    58%
Unfavorable          53      9     91     56     48     58     56     34
Hvn't hrd enough      4      3      2      7      6      3      3      4
REFUSED               3      2      3      4      5      2      3      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Favorable            29%    37%    44%    47%    51%    46%    48%    19%
Unfavorable          64     58     47     46     39     50     45     72
Hvn't hrd enough      5      3      5      3      5      2      4      6
REFUSED               2      2      4      5      5      2      3      3
 
 
14. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Mark Warner is handling his job as United States Senator?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Approve              62%    42%    81%    60%    58%    65%    66%    55%
Disapprove           22     42      6     24     28     17     22     30
DK/NA                16     17     13     16     14     17     12     15
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Approve              53%    61%    69%    66%    56%    65%    61%    65%
Disapprove           23     23     20     22     32     21     26     13
DK/NA                24     16     11     12     12     14     13     22
 
 
15. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Tim Kaine is handling his job as United States Senator?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Approve              58%    24%    89%    55%    52%    63%    58%    44%
Disapprove           32     64      2     37     39     25     34     46
DK/NA                11     12      9      8      9     12      8     10
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Approve              57%    57%    62%    55%    43%    59%    52%    72%
Disapprove           29     32     28     38     48     32     40     14
DK/NA                14     11      9      6      9      9      9     14
 
 
16. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Approve              59%    14%    97%    58%    53%    64%    55%    38%
Disapprove           38     84      1     37     44     33     42     59
DK/NA                 3      2      1      4      3      3      3      3
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Approve              73%    60%    54%    49%    42%    51%    47%    86%
Disapprove           27     38     41     47     56     45     50     11
DK/NA                 1      2      5      4      2      4      3      3
 
 
17. Are you generally optimistic or pessimistic about the next four years with Donald Trump as president?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Optimistic           55%    92%    24%    54%    63%    48%    50%    69%
Pessimistic          40      5     69     42     32     47     48     25
DK/NA                 5      3      6      4      5      4      2      6
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Optimistic           60%    51%    56%    52%    67%    52%    59%    45%
Pessimistic          39     45     38     38     29     44     37     48
DK/NA                 2      4      6     10      4      4      4      7
 
 
24. Should burning or destroying the American flag as a form of political protest be legal or should it be against the law?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Legal                48%    28%    61%    55%    53%    44%    59%    38%
Against the law      47     70     33     41     43     51     36     60
DK/NA                 4      2      5      4      4      4      5      2
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Legal                53%    54%    46%    41%    55%    44%    49%    48%
Against the law      44     40     50     56     42     53     48     47
DK/NA                 3      6      4      3      4      3      3      6
 
 
25. If the only way to make flag destruction illegal was to change the Constitution, would you support or oppose a Constitutional amendment making it illegal to destroy the flag for political reasons?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Support              34%    52%    23%    28%    34%    34%    31%    41%
Oppose               62     46     74     68     64     61     64     57
DK/NA                 4      3      3      4      2      6      4      2
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....           Non-
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Wht
 
Support              27%    31%    35%    44%    33%    38%    36%    30%
Oppose               72     64     62     52     65     57     61     66
DK/NA                 1      5      3      4      2      4      3      4