Gov. Dannel P. Malloy gets his highest approval rating in the fourth in a series of polls sponsored by the Yankee Institute: 54 percent say they approve of the Democrat and 45 percent disapprove.

But the poll, which was conducted by Pulse Opinion Research for the conservative think tank, also found a tighter margin when asked if voters will re-elect him: He leads an unnamed Republican, 42 percent to 39 percent.

Voters give the governor’s budget proposal generally poor reviews, with 54 percent saying it spends too much and 35 percent saying it’s about as good as could be expected in a bad economy. Malloy’s plans to borrow money to balance the budget is opposed by a 3-1 margin.

The full survey is available online.

The poll was taken Sunday night, with 450 persons reached by telephone. They responded by telephone keypad to a recorded script. Another 50 were polled online. The margin of error is plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

President Obama gets a 58 percent to 41 percent approval rating in the same poll. Numbers for Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy were 59-35 and 53-39, respectively.

The poll found Connecticut voters heavily approve immigration reform, with 69 percent say they favor allowing illegal immigrants a path to citizenship if they meet certain requirements such as paying taxes, passing a background check and learning English. Twenty-seven percent say they should be required to leave the U.S.

A year ago, a similar question found narrower support for a path to citizenship: 56 percent to 37 percent.

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Mark PazniokasCapitol Bureau Chief

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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