The 2022 Election in North Carolina

Marist North Carolina Poll

Budd Edges Beasley Among Definite Voters in North Carolina Senate Race

In the race for U.S. Senate in North Carolina, Democrat Cheri Beasley and Republican Ted Budd are tied among registered voters in the state. But, among those definitely planning to vote, Budd has a narrow lead over Beasley.

U.S. Senate Race in North Carolina
In November's election for U.S. Senate, are you supporting: [If undecided: If you had to decide today, are you leaning more towards:]
Source: Marist Poll North Carolina Registered Voters. Interviews conducted October 17th through October 20th, 2022, n=1,130 MOE +/- 3.8 percentage points. Definitely Voting in November's Elections: n= 899 MOE +/- 4.2 percentage points. Totals may not add to 100% due to rounding.
  • Beasley (44%) and Budd (44%) are tied among North Carolina registered voters in the contest for U.S. Senate. A notable 10% are undecided. Budd (49%) edges Beasley (45%) by four points among those who say they definitely plan to vote in this November’s election.

  • Among independents, Beasley receives 40% to 39% for Budd. A notable 17% are undecided. A 31-point gender gap exists, with a majority of men (53%) favoring Budd and a majority of women (51%) favoring Beasley.

  • 67% of registered voters strongly support their candidate for U.S. Senate. 69% of Beasley’s supporters and 65% of Budd’s backers say they are strongly committed to their candidate.

  • Beasley and Budd have identical favorable ratings among North Carolina residents. Budd and Beasley both have a 38% favorable rating. 37% of residents dislike the candidates, and one in four (25%) have either never heard of Beasley or Budd or are unsure how to rate them.

  • The Republican (46%) and Democratic (45%) candidates running for Congress are competitive among registered voters in North Carolina. Among those who say they definitely plan to vote, the Republicans (49%) on the ballot are +2 points over the Democrats (47%).

"The tale of the tape is all about turnout," says Lee M. Miringoff, Director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion. "Both Budd and Beasley have a large following in the state for their candidacies but Beasley’s core group, especially younger voters and women, are not as likely to vote."

Inflation Top of Mind for North Carolinians

38% of North Carolina adults say inflation is the issue most on their minds when thinking about November’s election. Preserving democracy (22%), abortion (16%), health care (8%), crime (7%), and immigration (7%) follow.

A majority of Republicans (53%) say inflation is the number-one issue in this year’s election. There is less consensus among Democrats. Preserving democracy (34%) tops the list followed by abortion (24%), and inflation (23%). Ten percent of Democrats mention health care. Among independents, 40% cite inflation, and 25% mention preserving democracy. 15% of independents say abortion is the top issue on their minds this election cycle.

More Than Three in Four Confident in Election Integrity

76% of North Carolina residents are confident or very confident that their state or local government will run a fair and accurate election this November. 24% are not very confident or not confident at all in the process.

Plurality of Voters Plan to Vote Before Election Day

46% of registered voters statewide say they plan to vote before Election Day while 37% report that they intend to vote on Election Day. Seven percent say that they have already voted at an early voting location while 5% report they have already voted by mail.

Democrats (50%) and independents (51%) are more likely than Republicans to say they have not yet voted but plan to cast their ballot before Election Day. 40% of Republicans say the same. Nearly half of Republicans (49%) are planning to vote on Election Day.

Biden’s Approval Rating in North Carolina

President Joe Biden’s job approval rating is upside down in North Carolina. 37% of residents approve of how he is performing in office while 56% disapprove. Residents are more than twice as likely to strongly disapprove (43%) of how Biden is doing his job than to strongly approve (17%).