What issues are most likely to sway the vote in 2018?
If the results of one poll are any indication, Democrats may not have that full-steam-ahead lane to electoral victory this November.
From Ali Meyer’s article at freebeacon.com:
Voters are saying health care is a top issue that should be discussed by candidates in the 2018 midterm elections, according to a poll from Kaiser Family Foundation.
Survey respondents were asked what they thought was the most important issue for candidates to talk about. Twenty-nine percent of respondents said health care, 27 percent said the economy and jobs, 24 percent said immigration, 24 percent said the situation with North Korea, and 19 percent said taxes and tax reform.
There was a higher share of Democrats who said health care was a top issue (39 percent) compared with 13 percent of Republicans and 32 percent of independents.
Voters who live in areas with more competitive House, Senate, and gubernatorial races are less concerned with health care and more concerned about jobs and the economy (34 percent).
What does this tell us?
Well, if the issue is how each political party will do in the 2018 midterm elections, the most important paragraph is the last one. Wny? Because if these data are accurate, jobs and the economy are most important where congressional seats are most competitive .
Assuming the economy continues to hum, and most workers pay lower taxes/receive more money in their paychecks…
…you can be sure Republicans will tout President Trump’s tax legislation as the reason – while reminding voters that not one Democrat in the house or senate voted for it.
Hmmmmm. 100% ownership of the good side of the single most important issue to voters, in areas where the competitive races are taking place. How do you suppose that might work out on election day?
And what will Democrats do? Trot out Nancy Pelosi and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, maybe Chuck Schumer as well, to tell these people that the bonuses of up to $1,000 they got at the beginning of the year, and the increased bottom line on each paycheck, are just “crumbs”…as Pelosi and Wasserman Schultz already have done?
Will they really try to win over recipients of bonuses and increased take-home pay by demeaning the lives they lead? By telling them an amount of money that means something to so many of them is “crumbs”? Shaming every worker and his/her family who needs that money for their households?
And what will Democrats offer as an alternative? That these workers would have been better off with no increase at all – which is what Democrats unanimously voted for?
Look, neither I nor anyone else knows how the 2018 midterms are going to come out. We don’t even know for sure that this will be the key issue driving midterm elections – i.e. whether one or more different issues, maybe that we don’t even know about today, will jump to the front of the pack by November.
But if things stand as they are, Republicans are on the good side of the year’s major issue and Democrats are on the bad side…which bodes very well for Republicans and very badly for Democrats.
One more point: As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, from a purely political perspective it is in Democrats’ interest to see the Trump/Republican tax legislation fail and the economy tank. If that were to happen, the political calculus would reverse and Democrats would be on the good side of this issue, with Republicans on the bad side.
My most fervent hope is that Democrat leaders would rather see a strong U.S. economy, even if it puts them at a political disadvantage, than a weakened economy which gives them political edge.
But, frankly, with people like today’s Chuck Schumer (as opposed to who/what he was in previous years), Nancy Pelosi, Dick Durbin and Keith Ellison among the party’s leadership – not to mention the self-aggrandizing, now-embittered Hillary Clinton – I can’t assure you I’m fully confident.