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Virginians on Sen. Webb

Sen. James Webb's (D-VA) diplomatic journey to Burma to secure the release of an American jailed there has propelled the former Navy Secretary back into the national spotlight. At home in Virginia, a new Washington Post poll shows a slim majority approve of the job he is doing as senator.

Overall, 51 percent approve of Webb's work in the Senate, 29 percent disapprove. Much of Webb's support is tepid, however, as 17 percent strongly approve, nearly the same proportion as strongly disapprove (16 percent). One in five have no opinion, a number that has budged little in the past two years.

Since last fall, Webb's approval rating has declined slightly, dropping three points among registered voters. It has fallen more sharply (10 points) among independent voters, a drop offset by a slight increase among Democrats, and declined seven points in the East/Richmond and West/Shenandoah regions. It has held steady in Northern Virginia and the Southeast.

Webb's ratings lag well behind those of the commonwealth's junior senator and former governor, Mark R. Warner. Two-thirds (67 percent) approve of the job he's done so far, 30 percent approve strongly. Webb trails both Warner and Virginia governor Timothy M. Kaine in name recognition. While just 8 percent have no opinion on Kaine's performance and 11 percent have none on Warner, 20 percent have no opinion on Webb.

The Washington Post poll was conducted Aug. 11-14 among a random sample of 1,002 adults in the Commonwealth of Virginia, including users of both conventional and cellular phones. The poll was completed before news of Webb's trip broke.

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Jim Webb is handling his job as U.S. Senator?

                ---Approve----   --Disapprove--     No 
                NET   Strongly   NET   Strongly   opinion
All             51       17      29       16        20

Democrat        71       30      10        2        19
Republican      36        5      46       26        19
Independent     48       16      31       19        21

Liberal         64       27      16        5        19
Moderate        61       20      22       10        18
Conservative    31        7      47       30        23

Liberal Dem.    74       36      12        3        14
Mod/Cons. Dem.  71       27       9        1        20
Lib/Mod. Rep.   50        9      32       14        18
Conserv. Rep.   26        2      57       35        18


Northern VA     60       20      25       16        15
Southeast       51       21      28       14        21
East/Richmond   45       15      30       16        25
West/Shenandoah 47       12      34       19        19

By Jennifer Agiesta  |  August 17, 2009; 1:22 PM ET
 
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Comments

Let me quote your article:

"At home in Virginia, a new Washington Post poll shows a slim majority approve of the job he is doing as senator. Overall, 51 percent approve of Webb's work in the Senate, 29 percent disapprove."

A 22% spread is a "slim majority?"

Pathetic.

If only your credibility were that "slim."

Posted by: nodebris | August 17, 2009 8:57 PM | Report abuse

jim webb is one of the only honest guys in the government, he will literally only do what he believes is right.

Posted by: formerlylove1 | August 18, 2009 1:46 AM | Report abuse

Jim Webb cares more about being a good Senator than he does about nurturing poll numbers. I hope he runs for re-election and wins, but it's obvious that is not the highest priority for him. He actually does put public service first. Look at the GI Bill, prison reform (in progress), and re-engaging with Burma while getting this PTSD-affected veteran safely home. A good record only halfway through his first term.

Posted by: fairfaxvoter | August 22, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

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