A new Quinnipiac University poll shows a significant gap between the percentage of voters who approve of the job Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is doing and those who think the Republican, serving his fifth term as governor, deserves a sixth. Branstad has a 49-percent approval rating, the poll shows, with just 31 percent disapproving. But voters are much more closely split on whether he should get another four years in office: 43 percent of voters say Branstad does not deserve another term, while 42 percent say he does.
"Gov. Terry Branstad's job approval numbers are just short of the 50 percent threshold and show a nearly 20 point spread between those who approve and disapprove of his job performance," said Quinnipiac University Polling Institute assistant director Peter Brown in memo accompanying the poll release. "The fact that voters are split on the question of whether Gov. Branstad deserves another term in Des Moines is probably a bit disconcerting for the governor. It could be that some voters like what he has done in office but that 20 years in the governor's office is just too long."
Branstad previously served as governor from 1983-1999, then ran again in 2010. He has yet to announce whether he'll run for another term in 2014. Meanwhile, no Democrat has officially entered the race yet, though state Sen. Jack Hatch has formed an exploratory committee. "Branstad Fatigue," to the extent it exists, may not matter without a credible Democratic candidate.
The Quinnipiac University poll surveyed 1,411 registered voters between May 15 and May 21, and has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 2.6 percentage points. The poll represents Quinnipiac's first foray into Iowa, where they join the West Des Moines-based Selzer & Company as live-caller firms who regularly poll the Hawkeye State.