Two polls released in the last two days show that support for Republicans is ebbing among seniors and that the mythical “generic ballot” is tightening.
As recently as April, Republicans held an eight-point advantage in the so-called generic ballot, which roughly gauges party support across the nation. Now, according to a new Emerson College poll, the race according to the generic ballot has tightened to a GOP lead of one point.
In 2010, when Republicans won 54 seats, their advantage in the generic ballot was four points. There is no national vote for Congress in 2022 — it’s 468 individual races: 435 in the House and 33 in the Senate.
But any poll that shows a precipitous drop in support should be examined as a harbinger of what’s to come.
Congressional Democrats have closed a nine-point Republican lead down to a single point, trailing 45% to 44%, the July Emerson College Polling National Survey finds. Nearly 100 days until the 2022 Midterm Elections, 91% of voters are very (74%) or somewhat (17%) motivated to vote this November.
Spencer Kimball, Executive Director of Emerson College Polling said, “Those who say abortion is the top issue facing the nation are more motivated to vote this November than any other issue group. Among the nearly 1 in 10 voters for whom abortion is the top issue, 89% are very motivated to vote this November; comparatively, 76% of voters who say the economy is the top issue are very motivated to vote. Voters who say abortion is the most important issue break for the Democratic congressional candidate over Republicans 80% to 8%.”
There are a helluva lot more voters motivated by the economy (76 percent) than abortion (10 percent). Pro-life voters do not see abortion as a top issue, nor do an overwhelming number of pro-choice voters. Ginning up fear and hysteria among women is just not working.
As far as the 91 percent of voters who are “very likely” to vote, I’ll believe it when I see it. If the turnout exceeds 25 percent, it would be a huge surprise.
Also read: The Left Should Be Happy With Biden
The drop in support from voters over 65 is far more troubling for Republicans.
A recent survey conducted by CNN and the research firm SSRS found that 47 percent of those aged 65 and over said they would vote for a GOP candidate if the midterm congressional election for their district were held “today,” with slightly more people aged 65 and over saying they would vote for a Democratic candidate (49 percent).
This is a major turnaround from May, when a previous CNN/SSRS poll found that nearly two-thirds of those aged 65 and over (62 percent) said they would back a Republican candidate in the midterms, compared to just 37 percent of seniors who said they would back a Democratic candidate.
According to the results, the GOP has seen a 15 percent drop in support from those aged 65 and over—one of the main demographics in any election—in just two months between the two polls being conducted.
Individual polls are snapshots, not trends. It’s not likely that Republicans have lost that much support in two months — especially since they’re not the party in power. But there are still 100 days to go before the midterm elections–and given the sinking economy, Democrats will be hard-pressed to counter the fear and loathing from voters of any age.