FiveThirtyEight is about to become the Left’s favorite publication to hate after they tossed cold water on Democratic Party hopes for surviving the 2022 midterms relatively unscathed. Nancy Pelosi is snorting cocaine if she thinks that Democrats will either keep or enlarge their majority in the House. She felt the same way in past midterms—she was wrong. The Senate is where Democrats think they can mount a defensive redoubt. During the summer, abortion hysterics and Biden crawling out of the 30s in approval ratings had the Left jumping for glee, showing the depths of their political delusions. Biden is still unpopular—and abortion was localized to the cities and coasts. It was magnified by the media, who happen to have their headquarters in these deep blue bastions—the coverage was overblown. Nate Silver’s crew now listed five reasons why the Democrats remain totally screwed for 2022.
One of the reasons you already know about: Democrats can’t bank on any more good news to break their way. The full froth of the pro-abortion cretins has peaked. The August spending bill has long left the news cycle. It did little to boost Democrats once the consumer index report reminded everyone that inflation is high and we’re in an economic recession. Republicans have a winning streak in the midterms that mirrors Aaron Rodger’s dominance over the Chicago Bears. And with the economy struggling and more American families realizing their home budgets and purchasing power has deteriorated under Biden, the more they will be looking elsewhere for relief. Of all places, I’d never thought the PA suburbs would be up for grabs, eminently reachable for Republicans this year. These people are done with ‘build back better’ and other Biden agenda items that produce sub-par results.
The issues favor Republicans, and the money advantage Democrats have enjoyed over the summer could also evaporate as pro-Trump PACs, along with some establishment campaign arms, begin pouring money into these races, especially now that we have the wind to our backs again (via 538):
Sure, this election could be an exception to the usual midterm pushback against the president’s party. But, it’s not always smart to bet on exceptions. So it’s worth going back over the reasons why I and other analysts initially expected this election to be a strong one for Republicans.
The opposition party — in this case, Republicans — has a long history of doing well in the midterms. It’s one of the more robust trends in American politics.
Though his numbers have improved recently, President Biden remains fairly unpopular, with an approval rating of 42 percent.
Americans remain quite unhappy about the direction of the country, which tends to hurt the incumbent party.
Republicans have a big structural advantage in the Senate given that they do well with white, rural voters and that white rural voters are considerably overrepresented in the Senate relative to their overall share of the U.S. population.
During the summer, Democrats benefited from media and voter attention to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, the Jan. 6 hearings, and the FBI investigation of former President Donald Trump. These issues tend to remind voters of Republican power and influence and potentially make the election more of a 2020-like choice between Democrats and Republicans and less of a referendum on Biden and Democrats’ performance.
But now, issues like immigration and the economy are again getting more headlines. That’s not to say abortion and those other issues won’t matter, but the summer could have reflected a best-case scenario for Democrats.
If I were actually betting on election outcomes at prediction markets — and no, I don’t do that for a variety of reasons! — I’d pay attention to the flow of campaign advertising. Advertising may not matter that much in terms of moving votes in an era with relatively few swing voters. But it certainly matters some, and the effects can be short-lived. So if one candidate had a temporary edge on their airwaves, it might lead to a temporary surge in the polls, which would then recede.
So one potential source of concern for Democrats would be if they’d dominated the advertising race during the summer, but only temporarily.
Is this happening? I honestly don’t know. There are some accounts of Republican groups having boosted spending recently. But while public fundraising and campaign spending is relatively easy to track, outside spending also plays a large role and is more opaque. Moreover, outside spending has tended to favor conservatives and Republicans this cycle.
The red wave is very much back on the radar.