Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson continues to maintain a commanding lead in the Republican primary for North Carolina governor, although a sizeable portion of the electorate remains undecided.
That’s the conclusion of a new Civitas poll of likely GOP primary voters in NC. Robinson commanded 49% of support, followed by State Treasurer Dale Folwell at 5% and former congressman Mark Walker at 4%.
Former state lawmaker Andy Wells and businessman Jesse Thomas both registered less than 1% support. Meanwhile, 41% remain undecided in the race.
Between eight-in-10 and nine-in-10 GOP primary voters are also undecided on the two other contested primaries for Council of State positions in 2024. For the office of lieutenant governor, the leaders are Rockingham County sheriff Sam Page and political strategist Hal Weatherman with 4% apiece, followed by former state senator Deanna Ballard at 3%. Eight-four percent are undecided.
In the race for labor commissioner, current House member Jon Hardister leads with 5%, followed by Travis Wilson and Luke Farley at 3% each. Eight-seven percent are undecided.
“Outside of the president and governor’s race, there is a lot of room to gain ground,” said Donald Bryson, CEO of the John Locke Foundation. “If I were a candidate in one of those races, I would be hitting the pavement and trying to improve my awareness of my campaign as much as possible. Name ID will be critical in these down-ballot Council of State races.”
As for the presidential race, Republican primary voters are more confident in their picks. Former president Donald Trump has 52% support, followed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at 12% and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley at 10%. Just 12% are undecided.
“Trump still has a hold on North Carolina Republicans,” Bryson said. “With a lead like this, it is hard to imagine what would be required for another Republican candidate to pass him in the polls to win North Carolina’s GOP delegates.”
The Civitas poll also queried GOP primary voters on public policy issues. One of those is reforming Certificate of Need — or CON — regulations in the state. CONs require healthcare providers to prove the necessity of new facilities or services before they can expand or open new locations.
Thirty-six percent of respondents said that CON regulations should be reformed or eliminated, while 9% said they should be kept the same. Fifty-five percent are unsure.
On the question of time limiting the length of the General Assembly’s session, 51% would support such a move with 15% opposed. Meanwhile, 86% would support term limits for leadership posts in the state House and Senate, with 4% opposed.