First, I saw this release from the state Democratic Party:
Columbia – Today, Winthrop University released its latest public polling data showing that once again, the majority of South Carolinians do not approve of the job Governor Nikki Haley is doing. The Governor made meager gains from within her Republican base but continues to turn off moderates in South Carolina with her politics before people approach that is standing in the way of creating 44,000 jobs by expanding health care, and is costing South Carolina’s taxpayers millions of dollars as a result of the corruption and dysfunction in the state government. The poll also contained bad news for the governor who got elected on a Tea Party wave and consistently chooses to put Tea-Party politics ahead of sound policy – the approval rating for the Tea Party continues to wan with only a quarter of respondents approving of the Governor’s Tea Party movement.
Then, I went back and looked at the news story, which said the opposite:
By ANDREW SHAIN — email@example.com
COLUMBIA — A pair of major 2014 candidates in South Carolina watched opinions about them go in different directions in a new poll released Wednesday.
Gov. Nikki Haley’s job approval is rising among voters — especially those in her Republican party, while U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham saw his support within the GOP falter over the past two months, according to a new Winthrop University poll…
So was she down or up? Well, while both reports were technically true, the reality is that statistically speaking, the level of support for Haley is the same as it’s been. The reported shift is within the margin of error:
Haley’s approval rating among South Carolinians rose to 43.5 percent, up a percentage point from two months ago.
The first-term Republican scores 45 percent among registered voters — also up a percentage point and the fourth straight gain in the past year of Winthrop polls.
More than one in three does not like the governor’s performance in office.
But Haley’s popularity among Republicans rose two percentage points to 69 percent since February — a high in two years of Winthrop polls…
The poll’s margin of error among registered voters was 3.5 percent.
Also… while Haley was “up” and Graham was “down,” Graham is still doing better than the governor is among all voters — although again, the difference between them is less than the margin of error:
His approval among registered voters dropped four percentage points to 44 percent in the past two months and slid among all South Carolinians two percentage points to 45 percent…
The most significant change for Graham was among Republicans, dropping “57.5 percent from 71.6 percent in February.”
Oh, by the way, though — if you think Graham’s numbers are bad, Tim Scott has a 38-percent approval rating among all voters, and 54 percent among Republicans.
So, let’s try to keep everything in perspective.