The midterms might not be a lock for Republicans, but, with a little over two weeks to Election Day, polls are showing that on issues that matter most to voters, Republicans are vastly outperforming their Democratic counterparts.
Democrats are hoping that voter’s concerns about “threats to democracy” and access to abortion will give them the edge in the midterms. But while voters care more about these issues than they did before the January 6 hearings reignited concerns about the state of democracy and the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade stoked concerns about women’s rights, ultimately voters are making decision at the ballot box based more on who can solve the current economic crisis than anything else. Democrats are even losing in demographics they normally held securely. (RELATED: ANALYSIS: Biden Survived The Hunter Curse Once. 2024 Could Be Different)
Voters of all political persuasions polled by The New York Times ranked the economy, inflation, and the cost of living as top concerns going into November.
Fascinating new Harvard-Harris poll:
The 3 issues Americans are most worried about: Inflation, Economy/Jobs and Immigration.
People perceive the GOP’s top priorities are also those.
But they see that Dems are most obsessed with a 3-hour riot that happened almost 2 years ago: pic.twitter.com/lAPf477hGU
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) October 16, 2022
“In fact, more than a third of independent voters and a smaller but noteworthy contingent of Democrats said they were open to supporting candidates who reject the legitimacy of the 2020 election, as they assigned greater urgency to their concerns about the economy than to fears about the fate of the country’s political system,” The New York Times noted when the poll’s findings were released Tuesday.
A Friday Harvard Harris poll had Republicans winning the generic congressional ballot by 6 points, as voters showed more trust in Republicans and Democrats on the issues they most cared about. (RELATED: ANALYSIS: Democrat Candidates Are Bowing Out, And It Could Spell Trouble For The Left’s 2024 Senate Hopes)
𝐍𝐄𝐖 𝐏𝐎𝐋𝐋: Republicans hold 𝟰 𝗣𝗢𝗜𝗡𝗧 lead over Democrats on Generic Ballot
Republicans 49% (+4)
⦿ Independents: GOP +10
⦿ Independent women: GOP +14
⦿ 5 pt shift towards R’s from Sept
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) October 17, 2022
“Republicans are connecting with voters on their key issues of inflation, crime, and immigration, while Americans see Democrats as mostly focused on January 6, women’s rights, and the environment,” the pollsters write.
Voters perceive Republicans as more focused on the issues they care most about, such as immigration, inflation, and the economy. Democrats are perceived as more focused on issues such as January 6th, women’s rights, and environment/climate change, issues which rank as 7%, 17%, and 14% respectively in importance to voters. (RELATED: Kari Lake Spends Two Straight Minutes Berating The Media About ‘Election Deniers’)
According to the poll, 55% of Americans of both parties blame Biden for inflation, which was ranked as the most important issue facing voters in the poll. This number even included a full 44% of Democrat voters who held the president responsible for inflation.
The POLITICO-Morning Consult poll shows the economy and inflation are the top issues for voters. 81% say the economy will play a “major role” in their vote choice, and 80% say inflation.
— PARIS (@PARISDENNARD) October 19, 2022
Politico/Morning Consult’s Wednesday poll found that more than 90% of Americans are concerned about the economy, and 80% saying the economy would play a roll in deciding who they would vote for. What’s more, when it comes to inflation 46% of voters trust Republicans to deal with the issue, while only 37% trust Democrats. The poll also confirmed that Republicans had gained in the generic congressional ballot, with Republicans increasing support to 44% and Democrat support slipping a point. (RELATED: Dems’ Favorite Scholar Ruy Teixeira Predicted Nevada Would Turn Deep Blue. Now He’s Changed His Tune)
Distrust with the status quo extends to black voters as well, as a New York Times/Siena poll finds that 52% of black voters think the country is headed in the wrong direction. Of those polled, 18% said they would vote for a Republican candidate if the election were held that day. The poll also predicted Republicans winning 34% of the Hispanic vote.
Female independent voters are backing Republicans by 18 points. This is a shocking reversal from the numbers in September that showed independent women favoring Democrats by 14 points. Even after focusing on women’s rights with the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs, Democrats are unable to court swing voters on the issue, when pressing more pressing economic needs loom.
The findings are correlated by down-ballot trends in favor of the GOP. A district in Oregon which Biden won by 14 points is now a toss-up, and another in California which Biden won by 11 points is also offering Republicans a chance.
“Republicans benefit from Americans’ dissatisfaction with the status quo,” Karl Rove wrote at The Wall Street Journal in October.
“My gut tells me the GOP will prevail 51-49 because of the political climate, issues and midterm swing. That may be my natural optimism, but then again, it’s tempered by my Norwegian heritage. Key races are still up in the air. The next 4½ weeks will be rocky, and Nov. 8 a long night,” Rove continued. (RELATED: Nike Co-Founder Phil Knight Uses Cocaine Analogy To Explain Why He’s Spending Big In Oregon Governor’s Race)
Republicans still need to be on high-alert for the midterms, however. Democrats are currently slightly favored to win the Senate, according to FiveThirtyEight, while Republicans are still favored to win the House.
If they stay razor focused on economic issues, as well as issues related to public safety, Republicans could have smooth sailing at the ballot box in November.