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North Carolina Senate: Tillis (R) 45%, Hagan (D) 40%

Republican challenger Thom Tillis has pushed slightly further ahead of Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan in North Carolina’s U.S. Senate race.

The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of Likely North Carolina Voters shows Tillis earning 45% support to Hagan’s 40%. Six percent (6%) prefer another candidate in the race, and nine percent (9%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

The two were virtually tied in early May, with Tillis posting a one-point lead. The GOP state House speaker was ahead by seven – 47% to 40% - in our first look at the race in late January.

North Carolina moves from a Toss-Up to Leans Republican in the Rasmussen Reports 2014 Senate Balance of Power rankings. Republicans need a net gain of six seats to take control of the Senate and are counting on North Carolina to be one of them.

Hagan who is seeking a second six-year term was elected to the Senate in 2008 with 53% of the vote. She has the support of 73% of North Carolina Democrats. Tillis, the winner of a hotly contested GOP primary, earns 79% support from the state’s Republicans and leads by better than two-to-one among voters not affiliated with either major party.

Sixty percent (60%) of all voters in the Tar Heel State think the primary focus of any new immigration legislation passed by Congress should be to send the new illegal immigrants who have just arrived here back home as quickly as possible. Only 22% think the chief aim of any new legislation should be to make it easier for these illegal immigrants to stay in the United States. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided. This is less support for helping them stay here than is found nationally.

Tillis has the backing of 64% of voters who favor quick deportation of these new illegal immigrants. Seventy-nine percent (79%) of those who want to make it easier for them to stay prefer Hagan.

The Obama administration is secretly moving these new illegals to detention centers around the country, and just 21% in North Carolina favor housing them in their state. That’s several points lower than findings nationally. Fifty-eight percent (58%) are opposed to housing them in North Carolina, while 21% are not sure.

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The survey of 750 Likely Voters in North Carolina was conducted on August 5-6, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Thirty-six U.S. Senate seats are at stake this November. Twenty-one of them are held by Democrats and 15 by Republicans. Democrats currently have a 53-to-45 majority over Republicans in the Senate. The Senate’s two independents caucus with the Democrats.

Republicans hope Hagan, like Senate Democrats in several other states, is vulnerable because of her vote for the new national health care law. Thirty-nine percent (39%) of North Carolina voters have a favorable opinion of that law, while 56% view it unfavorably. This is comparable to findings nationally and includes 18% with a Very Favorable opinion and 41% with a Very Unfavorable one. Like voters nationwide, voters in the state are more unhappy with the law than they were three months ago.

Eighty-seven percent (87%) of those with a Very Favorable view of the law support Hagan. Tillis picks up 83% of the vote from the larger group with a Very Unfavorable opinion.

Fifteen percent (15%) of all Tar Heel voters say they have been helped by Obamacare, while 34% say they have been hurt by it instead. That’s a higher number of voters who say they have been helped and hurt by the law than is found nationally.

Hagan is viewed Very Favorably by 18% of voters and Very Unfavorably by 27%. For Tillis, Very Favorables are 14% and Very Unfavorables 22%. He is only slightly less well-known than the incumbent.

At this point in the race, Rasmussen Reports still considers the number of people with a strong opinion more significant than the total favorable/unfavorable numbers.

Richard Burr, the state’s other U.S. senator and a Republican, is seen Very Favorably by 15% and Very Unfavorably by 12%.

Twenty-one percent (21%) in North Carolina consider the economy good or excellent, but 41% describe it as poor. However, 36% say their own finances are good or excellent, compared to 19% who view their personal finances as poor.

Republican nominee Mitt Romney carried North Carolina over President Obama in the 2012 election by a 50% to 48% margin. Forty-eight percent (48%) now approve of the job the president is doing, while 49% disapprove. This includes 24% who Strongly Approve and 42% who Strongly Disapprove, giving the president a job approval rating comparable to what he earns nationwide.

See our most recent numbers from the Senate races in AlaskaArkansas, ColoradoGeorgia, Idaho, IllinoisIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaine, Michigan, MississippiMontanaNebraskaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Carolina (special), South DakotaTennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

Fifty-three percent (53%) of North Carolina voters approve of the job Republican Governor Pat McCrory is doing. Forty-three percent (43%) disapprove. This includes 17% who Strongly Approve and 26% who Strongly Disapprove.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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The survey of 750 Likely Voters in North Carolina was conducted on August 5-6, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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