Since July of last year tracking polling from Morning Consult has shown a steady decline in Senator Heidi Heitkamp’s approval numbers. From July of last year through the end of March the number of North Dakotans saying they approve of Heitkamp went from 60 percent down to 47 percent while the number saying the disapprove climbed.
Today Morning Consulted released new polling, conducted February 1 through April 30 of this year, and the results continue to be ugly for Heitkamp. Her approval number is now down to 44 percent while her disapproval has climbed to 42 percent.
You can read the full polling report below. This graph I created shows the trend lines for Heitakmp’s approval/disapproval numbers in Morning Consult’s polling:
The ugly polling for Heitkamp doesn’t stop there. Asked if Heitkamp deserved re-election, just 35 percent of respondents said yes while 49 percent said it was time for someone new. It doesn’t appear as though the polling named who that “someone new” would be. Heitkamp has an opponent in Congressman Kevin Cramer. It’s fair to say that respondents may have reacted differently if given a choice between Cramer and Heitkamp.
Still, for an incumbent just months away from election day, this isn’t good:
If you squint your eyes, the generic ballot question is sort of better for Heitkamp. Sort of. While the incumbent out performed the generic Democratic candidate, the generic Republican still did better:
Last week Heitkamp’s campaign released their first video advertising of the 2018 election cycle, and it was a re-run of one of her 2012 campaign ads. I wondered if that choice, using an old campaign ad, wasn’t driven by a need for Heitkamp’s campaign to get some positive messaging in front of voters to stop her free fall in the polling.
Given this most recent polling, I believe that now more than ever.
Here’s the full polling report: