POST-MIDTERM ELECTION HARVARD CAPS / HARRIS POLL: COUNTRY REMAINS EVENLY DIVIDED AND BIDEN CONTINUES TO BE UNDERWATER WITH VOTERS, DESPITE DEMOCRATS BEATING MIDTERM EXPECTATIONS
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DEMOCRATS BEAT MIDTERM EXPECTATIONS DUE TO STRONG TURNOUT
CONFIDENCE IN THE DIRECTION OF THE COUNTRY REMAINS LOW AND BIDEN’S APPROVAL IS FLAT AT 43 PERCENT
DESANTIS’ 2024 PROSPECTS IMPROVE WITH 20 POINT SHIFT AWAY FROM TRUMP AMONG GOP VOTERS
NEW YORK and CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , Nov. 21, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Stagwell (NASDAQ: STGW) today released the results of the November Harvard CAPS / Harris Poll, a monthly collaboration between the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard (CAPS) and the Harris Poll and HarrisX. Download key results from the poll here.
The poll shows that Democrats outperformed expectations in the midterms as they closed the turnout gap by taking advantage of early voting and driving their core issues of protecting democracy and abortion to be most salient after the economy. On the Republican side, Florida governor Ron DeSantis emerged as a big winner – his support in a 2024 GOP primary increased by 11 points among GOP voters while Donald Trump’s fell 9 points. Nevertheless, Trump still leads the Republican primary choice with 46% support among GOP voters.
Looking ahead to the new government, a strong majority of voters want to curb Congressional spending, and support for Ukraine is fracturing as Republicans and Independents increasingly soften on the rising price tag of supporting the war.
“The midterms didn’t change much, but Democrats did better than many expected because they had the better turnout operation, especially in early voting, and because they successfully put Trump on the ballot – everywhere except for Florida,” said Mark Penn, Co-Director of the Harvard-CAPS Harris Poll and Stagwell Chairman and CEO. “The biggest lesson of the midterms is that swing voters do count – the parties have exhausted their bases, and looking ahead to 2024, the country needs someone who, like Ron DeSantis did in Florida, can achieve unity.”
DEMOCRATS MADE UP THE TURNOUT DEFICIT
- Democrats closed the gap from the pre-election poll which had Likely Voters +3 for the GOP and Registered Voters tied 50-50
- Democrats took advantage of the early and absentee vote: 52% of Democrats voted before Election Day, compared to 45% of Republicans.
- One third of Independents which lean Republican in their choices sat out the election.
- Democrats successfully highlighted their core issues: the economy was the most important issue across the board (42%), but protecting democracy (18%) and abortion (16%) were next.
DESANTIS EMERGES AS WINNER WHILE TRUMP TAKES A HIT
- Among GOP voters, Trump’s support in a 2024 primary fell 9 points to 46%, while DeSantis rose 11 points to 28%.
- Voters said the biggest winners of the midterm were the Democratic Party (32%) and DeSantis (15%).
- In a hypothetical 2024 presidential race, DeSantis runs even with Biden and beats Harris by 3 points.
UNHAPPINESS WITH THE DIRECTION OF THE COUNTRY REMAINS IN PLACE
- President Biden’s approval is flat at 43 percent.
- A majority of American voters continue to say their financial situation is becoming worse.
- 4 in 10 voters believe the country is in a recession, and another 4 in 10 think it will be in a recession next year.
AMERICAN PRIORITIES FOR NEXT CONGRESS
VOTERS WANT MODERATE SENSIBLE POLICIES
- Roughly 80% of voters agree on each of the following: they want to reduce misinformation on the Internet, they want to curb Congressional spending, and they voted out of concern for issues like the economy, crime, and immigration.
- Voters want the parties to moderate themselves: 62% think the Democrats have moved too far to the left, and 56% think the Republicans have moved too far to the right.
VOTERS EXPECT A SLATE OF INVESTIGATIONS FROM THE NEW HOUSE
- Voters want more clarity on possible political bias: Strong majorities think the House should investigate the Hunter Biden laptop (65%), whether technology companies have been censoring political speech (74%), and whether politics have been affecting the FBI’s actions (77%).
- The January 6 committee continues to be unpopular: 62% of voters want the House to end it.
UKRAINE SUPPORT IS SOFTENING
- Support for costly aid packages is decreasing among Republicans and Independents: 61% of Republicans and 59% of Independents oppose providing another $27 billion in aid to Ukraine.
The November Harvard-CAPS Harris Poll survey was conducted online within the United States from November 16-17, 2022, among 2,212 registered voters by The Harris Poll and HarrisX. Follow the Harvard CAPS Harris Poll podcast at https://www.markpennpolls.com/ or on iHeart Radio, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and other podcast platforms and sign up to receive the poll monthly at www.harvardharrispoll.com.
About The Harris Poll & HarrisX
The Harris Poll is a global consulting and market research firm that strives to reveal the authentic values of modern society to inspire leaders to create a better tomorrow. It works with clients in three primary areas: building twenty-first-century corporate reputation, crafting brand strategy and performance tracking, and earning organic media through public relations research. One of the longest-running surveys in the U.S., The Harris Poll has tracked public opinion, motivations, and social sentiment since 1963, and is now part of Stagwell, the challenger holding company built to transform marketing.
HarrisX is a technology-driven market research and data analytics company that conducts multi-method research in over 40 countries around the world on behalf of Fortune 100 companies, public policy institutions, global leaders, NGOs and philanthropic organizations. HarrisX was the most accurate pollster of the 2020 U.S. presidential election.
About the Harvard Center for American Political Studies
The Center for American Political Studies (CAPS) is committed to and fosters the interdisciplinary study of U.S. politics. Governed by a group of political scientists, sociologists, historians, and economists within the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, CAPS drives discussion, research, public outreach, and pedagogy about all aspects of U.S. politics. CAPS encourages cutting-edge research using a variety of methodologies, including historical analysis, social surveys, and formal mathematical modeling, and it often cooperates with other Harvard centers to support research training and encourage cross-national research about the United States in comparative and global contexts. More information at https://caps.gov.harvard.edu/.
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