Early Republican Midterm Enthusiasm Advantage: With about fourteen months until the 2018 Midterms, Republicans – especially those who strongly support President Donald Trump – are more enthusiastic about voting than Democrats and those who disapprove of the president. Even though Democrats lead on most generic ballots tests, the sentiment has not translated into excitement among likely Democratic voters.
A July 13th Washington Post/ABC News poll found 65% of Republicans and those who lean Republican say they are absolutely certain to vote in next year’s Midterms. Even more promising for the GOP is that 72% of those who strongly approve of President Donald Trump say they are certain to vote next year. Only 57% (-8) of Democrats / lean Democrats say they are certain to vote, while only 61% (-11) of those who strongly disapprove of the president say they’ll turn out in 2018. The Washington Post notes that among those who did not vote in the 2014 Midterms, Republicans and Democrats are “about as equally as likely to say they plan to vote in 2018,” a possible sign that there are not yet many new Democrats driven to vote in the 2018 Midterms.
Republicans cannot count on Democrats staying home, however. They must maintain an enthusiasm advantage to keep the U.S. House and Senate. This means finishing the job on health care, tax reform, and the budget, thereby giving their voters reason to show up next year.