Wednesday, March 12, 2014
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Gov. Paul LePage
Gregory Rec / Staff Photographer
One reason for the optimism, Colgan said, is that the headlines of mass layoffs have faded. "People are feeling much less threatened that they are going to lose their jobs, even if we're not gaining a lot."
Another reason is that Congress went on recess so headlines about the federal debt crisis were replaced with presidential candidates promising to make things better, he said.
Despite the optimism about the economy, only 38 percent of Maine voters said they feel the nation is going in the right direction, while 53 percent said they feel it is on the wrong track. Those who said the country is on the wrong track cited the economy and dysfunction of Congress and government as the biggest reasons.
Slightly more respondents said Maine is on the right track than the wrong track -- 42 percent to 40 percent.
Whether voters say Maine is headed in the right or the wrong direction is linked closely to their opinion of LePage. The tough-talking, uncompromising Republican governor was cited as the top reason for their answer, whether voters liked Maine's direction or not.
LePage's approval rating is at 42 percent, according to the poll, with 47 percent of respondents saying they disapprove of the way he is handling his job.
The polarized opinions may help explain why LePage has kept a relatively low profile during the fall campaign for control of the state Legislature.
Staff Writer John Richardson can be contacted at 791-6324 or at: