GOP Pollster Explains What Went Wrong And WhyPosted by Amy Barton on Oct 23, 2013 in National Politics
Republican pollster Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies just released a new report analyzing new polling data in the wake of the government shutdown. The good news for Democrats is that public opinion about the GOP is in the crapper. The bad news for Democrats is that even though constituents in Republican House districts are dissatisfied with their representative by a 20-point margin, those constituents still prefer to see a Republican-controlled House. In other words, they are more likely to vote for a Republican challenger over the incumbent, but they are also more likely to re-elect the incumbent than to vote for a Democrat. Thank you gerrymandering.
Here are some more tidbits from the data:
- In September, 38% of Americans favored de-funding the Affordable Care Act (44% opposed). But only 19% of Americans favored shutting down the government in order to de-fund the ACA. By October, the number of Americans opposed to defunding the ACA had increased to 50%. In other words, popularity of the ACA increased by 6% during the shutdown.
- In Republican House districts, 37% approve of their elected representative while 57% disapprove. That sounds promising. However, in those same districts, 46% prefer to retain a Republican majority in the House with 38% preferring a Democratic majority. It is therefore unlikely that House seats currently held by Republicans will flip.
- 60% of all voters would vote to replace every single House member. As a result of gerrymandered districts, see above, most voters in Republican House districts would vote to replace their current representative with a new Republican.
- A solid majority, 52% in October, believe the government should do more to solve people’s problems (up from 48% in June). This number corroborates the electorates general shift toward Democrats.
- While the favorability of both parties is down, Democrats hold a solid lead (43%) over Republicans (28%).
Future Opinions About ACAMcInturff goes on to predict that public opinion about the ACA will develop based on what happens between now and the 2014 elections, which is a reasonable assessment. Republicans are critiquing the ACA based on speculation and fear-mongering. The fact is, no one is yet covered by an insurance policy under the ACA. The earliest possible start date for coverage is January 1.
The fact is, if the ACA is as successful as the early anecdotes suggest, its favorability numbers will continue to rise. I don’t care if you’re a Republican or a Democrat, saving hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars per year on health insurance premiums and co-pays is good news.
Government Shutdown–The Gift That Keeps on GivingThe Public Opinion Strategies data shows a very significant positive swing for Democrats and the Affordable Care Act. While it may be very difficult to flip the House of Representatives to blue as a result of gerrymandered districts, state-wide voting is another story. Democrats are primed to increase their majority in the Senate, as well as to take the governorship in traditionally red states–including Arizona and Nebraska where the Republican incumbents are term-limited out and Texas, where Rick Perry is not seeking reelection.
See the Public Opinion Strategies ReportDaily Rogue