Baker still most popular governor in US

Ryan McBride/Staff file photoGov. Charlie Baker speaks to residents and local leaders at Notch Brewery in Salem in April during a local stop on his tour through cities and town to promote a housing reform bill.

Gov. Charlie Baker remained the country's most popular governor in the latest Morning Consult quarterly rankings released Thursday, enjoying 59-point net approval during a survey period that largely took place before a string of breakdowns on the MBTA and a scandal at the Registry of Motor Vehicles.

Baker's second-quarter ratings — 73% of Massachusetts voters viewing him favorably and 14% unfavorably — were unchanged from the first quarter of 2019 and once again topped all other 49 governors, according to Morning Consult's poll.

The governor, a Republican who has bonded with Beacon Hill Democrats, enjoyed his strongest support with Democratic voters: His net approval among his own party was 51 percentage points, compared to 60 with independent voters and 62 with registered Democrats.

Thursday's results are based on surveys with more than 9,400 Massachusetts voters conducted between April 1 and June 30. Much of that span predated a series of high-profile MBTA incidents, including a June 11 Red Line derailment that caused such significant signal damage that riders are experiencing daily delays that will last at least through Labor Day.

The survey period also ended before it became clear that, in addition to failing to suspend the license of a West Springfield man who allegedly killed seven in a New Hampshire crash, the RMV had for more than a year left out-of-state driver violation notices untouched and had not been notifying other states of Massachusetts license suspensions.

The four most popular governors in Morning Consult's rankings — Baker, Maryland's Larry Hogan, New Hampshire's Chris Sununu and Vermont's Phil Scott — are all Republicans in states with Democratic-majority legislatures.

~ Chris Lisinski/SHNS

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