Pundits and political strategists declared prior to the 2020 election season that it would one of the most consequential in U.S. history — but the upcoming 2022 midterm races might actually claim that title.
A recent National Republican Congressional Committee survey found that House Republicans have an increased chance of taking back a majority next year, in part due to the Democratic Party’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis. Polls like this one are likely to cost House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and others in her party some sleep at night.
“A Republican who will be a check-and-balance”
One of the more intriguing data points from the NRCC survey showed that in so-called “ticket-splitting” districts, where voters chose candidates of different parties in the presidential and congressional races, the GOP led Democrats by eight points.
Republicans garnered support from 45% of respondents compared to just 37% for Democrats.
Adding to Pelosi’s political misfortunes, the same poll found that her embrace of far-left agenda proposals is likely to bolster the chances for Republican candidates focused on regaining a majority.
A slim majority — 52% — of voters said that they want to elect “a Republican who will be a check-and-balance to Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi” in the upcoming midterm elections.
By comparison, just about 4 in 10 respondents would rather have a Democrat who would help the party push through progressive legislation over the coming years.
“Hold them off for the next two years”
As for Pelosi’s personal popularity numbers, her unfavorable rating stands at a staggering 58% across the aforementioned ticket-splitting districts.
About half of that subset finds her “very” unfavorable.
A number of GOP lawmakers, including Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), are confident in their party’s chances, which would throw a disruptive wrench into the Biden administration’s legislative wishlist.
“I think we’re going to win back the House,” he said during the recent Conservative Political Action Conference. “In 2023, Leader [Kevin] McCarthy will be Speaker McCarthy. … We’ve just got to hold them off for the next two years.”
It remains to be seen how much influence former President Donald Trump, who also spoke at CPAC, will have on the upcoming midterm elections. He has already weighed in on several races by endorsing candidates he believes best embodies his populist agenda.