By Paul Gable
The first Winthrop Poll since spring has some interesting findings among South Carolina respondents regarding the removal of the Confederate battle flag.
The Winthrop Poll is a long-term survey initiative designed to keep public policy makers across the country in touch with the attitudes and opinions of residents of South Carolina. It is the only regular “snapshot” of public policy attitudes of the residents of the South or of the state of South Carolina.
Two-thirds of the respondents said the SC General Assembly made the correct decision this summer to remove the Confederate battle flag from State House grounds. Broken down by race, 54% of White respondents and 93% of Black respondents supported removal of the flag.
However, asked about the significance of the flag, 47% said it stood for Southern pride while 40% of respondents said it stood for racial conflict.
Only 25% of South Carolina respondents said they believed the national economy was going in the right direction. However, again the schism as 63% said the South Carolina economy is good or fairly good.
Respondents said the two most important issues facing South Carolina are jobs/unemployment and education, the two issues tied at 13.3%.
Gov. Nikki Haley received a 55% approval rating with Sen. Tim Scott receiving 53% approval and Sen. Lindsey Graham receiving 40% approval from respondents.
With respect to roads, 84% of respondents said the state should give priority to fixing existing roads over building new roads.
Link to complete poll findings: http://www.winthrop.edu/winthroppoll/default.aspx?id=9804