Republican woes are getting worse

by | Oct 26, 2017 | 2018 elections, Editor's Blog, News | 3 comments

More evidence emerged this week showing the difficulties Congressional Republicans face as they enter the 2018 cycle. A Fox News poll shows Democrats with a staggering 15-point advantage on the generic ballot (“If the election for Congress were held tomorrow, would you vote for a Democrat in your district or a Republican”). That’s consistent with FiveThirtyEight’s average of a 13-point Democratic margin.

Third quarter fundraising reports show that Democratic candidates significantly out-raised their Republican counterparts, indicating an early enthusiasm gap in the fight to control Congress. According to an analysis by Talking Points Memo, “More than 30 incumbent Republicans raised less money than their Democratic challengers.” In Senate races, Democratic incumbents, even in states where Trump won, have big advantages over their challengers, while several competitive Republican incumbents were out-raised by their Democratic opponents. If nothing else, Democratic candidates are more motivated and Democratic supporters are more inspired to support them.

Donald Trump is certainly hurting Republicans. His approval rating is below 40% in almost every poll and his disapproval rating is close to 60%. His reckless tweets might excite his most ardent supporters but they scare a lot of average Americans and turn off those who want more civil discourse.

But Republican problems go beyond Trump. The GOP has control of both Houses of Congress and the presidency as well as a favorable Supreme Court yet can’t seem to get anything done. They’ve failed to act on their signature campaign promise to repeal and replace Obamacare. As letters show up indicating significant rate increases, voters will blame Republicans for the failure to fix or scrap what they branded a bad program for seven years.

Their policies also aren’t helping them. While they were out of power, Republicans tried to claim they were looking out for the middle class but once they started governing, their policies protect the corporate interests that have generated anger from both the left and right. The Senate passed a bill this week that would protect Wall Street banks from being sued in class action lawsuits. They also announced that they wanted to help pay for tax breaks that will disproportionally benefit the wealthy and big corporations by limiting the amount middle class workers can put into tax-deferred 401(K) accounts. Trump, who has a better sense of the working class, rejected the notion, but Republicans in Congress are trying to keep it alive.

As I’ve said before, a lot can change in a year. The economy could improve even more. The president could pivot. We could be attacked by terrorists. We could find ourselves in another war. Democrats could become as divided as Republicans. But, right now, Republicans are struggling. Their leader is highly unpopular and so are the policies they’re introducing. They seem to be unable to govern despite controlling most of the government. Their party is in an all-out civil war with no clear outcome.

While Democrats have their own problems, they have the advantage of being in the minority. They don’t have to produce anything. They just need to capitalize on the dissatisfaction with the Republicans in Washington. Let’s see if they can accomplish that simple task.


  1. The Ghost of Elections Past

    I don’t care if 13% of voters SAY they will vote for a Democrat vs. a Republican! The follow-up questions should be: “Will you vote for a Democrat who will be running against YOUR representative or senator, ‘ole Billy Bob, who keeps promising to make abortion illegal and send those brown-skinned people back to the south of this country?”

    Because of gerrymandering, Democrats might win a majority, but each vote is tallied in separate Congressional districts, so the majority of districts may still remain in the hands of fascists.

  2. Norma Munn

    Thomas, your data is probably completely correct, but never, ever underestimate the ability of the Democratic Party to be stupid at a national level. They have made me firm believers in term limits for not only office holder, but also Democratic Party officials and/or leaders. Yes, they are usually nicer while they screw up, but nice is not a political strategy.

  3. Jay Ligon

    The Republican tax plan, passed today, calls for adding $ trillions to the national debt in order to fund tax breaks for the richest few. The least compelling reason to pile debt onto the mountain of existing national debt would be to borrow money for people who already have most of it.

    This is the GOP. MAGA red caps never see this coming. Their check is never in the mail.

    They envision a world where liberals ride in long limousines, while billionaires driving rusty trucks sit beside them on plastic stools enjoying their Big Macs. Regular guys with hotel chains, oil wells, and power plants. Buddies ready to help them out. Those guys are going to bring back their jobs if we keep pouring money into their bank accounts.

    This week Republicans in Washington cleared the way for more bank fraud and smacked down the middle class with another tax hike for everyone else and a tax cut for the very, very rich. But those red caps are awesome.

Related Posts


Get the latest posts from PoliticsNC delivered right to your inbox!

You have Successfully Subscribed!