It comes as no surprise that Barack Obama remains popular in the state where he was born 55 years ago Thursday.
The first U.S. president from Hawaii has 60 percent of Oahu voters viewing him in a positive light, according to The Civil Beat Poll.
Obama is viewed negatively by 36 percent.
By contrast, Gov. David Ige’s positive and negative numbers are nearly identical — 41 percent and 42 percent respectively.
Nearly one-fifth of voters are unsure how they feel about Ige.
Of course, Ige is in the middle of his first four-year term while Obama is nearing the end of his second term in the White House.
The president is far better known and is a historical figure.
What’s interesting, however, is that just about the same percentage of voters (54 percent and 53 percent, respectively) feel the United States and Hawaii are going in the wrong direction.
“In general, people within the margin of error still have some discontent with the country and Hawaii, but Obama remains popular,” said Matt Fitch, executive director of Merriman River Group, which conducted The Civil Beat Poll. “Obama is even a little more popular than he was when we polled in January, which mirrors nationwide trends.”
Fitch also pointed out that Ige’s numbers are similar to those of Mayor Kirk Caldwell, and that about the same percentage of voters believe Honolulu is headed in the wrong direction, too.
As for the president, Fitch noted, “He is always more popular in Hawaii than he is nationally.”
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Civil Beat surveyed 851 registered Oahu voters July 25-27. The poll sampled 70 percent landlines and 30 percent cell phones and had a margin of error of 3.4 percent.
Another thing that stands out in the latest poll is how older people are more positive about their country than younger people.
Sixty percent of those age 50 and younger feel the U.S. is going in the wrong direction, while 51 percent of those older than 50 feel it’s going in the right direction.
“It’s a little troubling that younger people are more pessimistic than older people, and by a good margin,” said Fitch.
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