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State

VoteCast: Illinois voters say nation headed wrong way

Gov. Bruce Rauner talks with the Northwest Herald editorial board on Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 in Crystal Lake.
Gov. Bruce Rauner talks with the Northwest Herald editorial board on Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 in Crystal Lake.

A majority of voters casting midterm election ballots in Illinois said the country is headed in the wrong direction, according to a wide-ranging survey of the American electorate.

As voters cast ballots for governor and members of Congress in Tuesday's elections, AP VoteCast found that 33 percent of Illinois voters said the country is on the right track, compared with 67 percent who said the country is headed in the wrong direction.

Here's a snapshot of who voted and why in Illinois, based on preliminary results from AP VoteCast, an innovative nationwide survey of about 138,000 voters and nonvoters _ including 786 voters and 227 nonvoters in the state of Illinois _ conducted for The Associated Press by NORC at the University of Chicago.

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RACE FOR GOVERNOR

Democrat J.B. Pritzker appeared to lead Republican Bruce Rauner among voters under 45 in the race for governor. Voters ages 45 and older were divided.

Voters without a college degree appeared to prefer Pritzker. By contrast, college graduates were divided.

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TOP ISSUE: HEALTH CARE

Health care was at the forefront of voters' minds: 30 percent named it as the most important issue facing the nation in this year's midterm elections. Others considered the economy (16 percent), immigration (16 percent), gun policy (11 percent) and the environment (7 percent) to be the top issue.

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STATE OF THE ECONOMY

Views of economic conditions in the country are mixed – 45 percent of voters said the nation's economy is not good, compared with 55 percent who said it's good.

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TRUMP FACTOR

For 40 percent of Illinois voters, President Donald Trump was not a factor they considered while casting their votes. By comparison, 20 percent said a reason for their vote was to express support for Trump, and 40 percent said they voted to express opposition to Trump.

A majority of voters in Illinois had negative views of Trump: 62 percent said they disapprove of how he is handling his job as president, while 38 percent said they approve of Trump.

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AP VoteCast is a survey of the American electorate in all 50 states conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago for The Associated Press and Fox News. The survey of 786 voters and 227 nonvoters in Illinois was conducted Oct. 29 to Nov. 6, concluding as polls close on Election Day. Interviews in English and Spanish with self-identified registered voters selected from opt-in online panels are calibrated with interviews of randomly sampled registered voters nationwide. The margin of sampling error for voters is estimated to be plus or minus 9.8 percentage points. Although there is no statistically agreed upon approach for calculating margins of error for non-probability samples, the margin of error is estimated using a calculation called the root mean squared error and other statistical adjustments. All surveys are subject to multiple sources of error, including from sampling, question wording and order, and nonresponse. Find more details about AP VoteCast's methodology at http://www.ap.org/votecast.

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