A majority of Pennsylvania voters, 59 percent, believe the state is "off on the wrong track," while in the governor's race Democrat Tom Wolf leads incumbent Gov. Tom Corbett by 22 points, according to the latest Franklin & Marshall College Poll.
Wolf , a York businessman who in May defeated three competitors to win the Democratic primary, will face Corbett in the general election on Nov. 4. Among likely voters, Wolf is ahead of the governor, 47 percent to 25 percent ,with 27 percent undecided.
The poll reflects interviews with 502 registered voters conducted between June 23 and 29. The sample error is plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.
About one in four voters, 26 percent, believe Corbett is doing an "excellent" or "good" job, an increase from the 23 percent rating recorded in a January Franklin & Marshall College Poll. Almost half, 49 percent, of Republicans rate his performance as "excellent" or "good," up from 38 percent in January's poll. About one in four voters, 26 percent, believe Corbett has performed well enough to deserve re-election.
The poll's director, G. Terry Madonna, said Corbett is the "decided underdog in the race," having the lowest job performance ranking of any Pennsylvania governor in modern history.
"The governor needs a game-changing moment," Madonna said. "He needs policy victories that are important to voters."
The poll continues to show that education and jobs, at 22 percent and 13 percent, respectively, are the issues voters care about most in considering who to support for governor.
An F&M forum between Corbett and Wolf is tentatively planned for the fall, following the successful May 1 forum with the four candidates vying in the Democratic primary.
On the national front, the poll showed that one in three, 34 percent, of registered Pennsylvania voters believe President Barack Obama is doing an "excellent or "good" job as president, up from his January rating of 30 percent.
The 23-year-old Franklin & Marshall College Poll is conducted under the direction of Madonna, Head Methodologist Berwood Yost, director of the Floyd Institute's Center for Opinion Research, and Project Manager Jacqueline Redman. It is produced in conjunction with the Philadelphia Daily News, WGAL-TV in Lancaster, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh, WPVI-TV6/ABC Philadelphia, Times-Shamrock Newspapers, Harrisburg PennLive/The Patriot News, Lancaster Newspapers/Lancaster Online, and the Reading Eagle.