Voters’ support for Republicans slipped 10 points in two months in a new poll, tempering the GOP’s bullish outlook for the 2022 midterm elections.
A USA Today/Suffolk University poll found 37% of voters would vote for Republicans compared to 38% who would vote Democratic on a generic ballot if the elections were held today.
The same poll in November showed Republicans leading Democrats on a generic ballot by 8 points, 46% to 38%.
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GOP analyst Jean Card said the poll is a reminder that Republicans should take this election year seriously and shore up support before November.
“The ‘22 elections are ours to lose,” Ms. Card said. “We have an unpopular, incumbent president, ‘22 is a tremendous opportunity for Republicans, but opportunities can be squandered, so we need to be careful about that.”
The poll also found low approval ratings for President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
Only 40% of respondents said they approved of Mr. Biden’s job performance, compared to 54% who disapproved. Ms. Harris got 32% approval compared to 47% who disapproved of her job performance.
Satisfaction with Congress was also bleak with 70% saying they disapproved of the job lawmakers are doing. Just 16% approved.
Ms. Card said Republicans should mirror the campaign strategy used by Virginia Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin, who marshaled a grassroots campaign that zeroed in on the economy and education.
The Youngkin, who has never held public office before, also worked to make GOP inroads to minority groups who traditionally vote Democrat.
“It’s the Youngkin playbook,” Ms. Card said. “That should be followed to win. It’s a winning strategy.”
The poll surveyed 1,000 voters between Dec. 27 to 30. It had an error margin of +/-3.1%.
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