A Republican research firm discovered that the expected red wave was slowed down by the presence of critical GOP constituencies as well as a tendency to vote split-ticket during the midterm elections.
Despite the favorable political climate, “tactical mistakes” discouraged voters from supporting all the GOP candidates. This led to 31% of the traditional Republican voters to split their ticket, compared to 25% of Democratic votes. A WPA Research poll found that many were “generally less satisfied with their party nominees”.
Amanda Iovino, principal at WPA, stated that President Joe Biden and Democrats’ woke agenda are unpopular and will remain so. However, a series tactical missteps made by GOP campaigns, candidate quality issues and concerns over abortion in key races and a focus more on the past than the future of GOP contributed to the GOP’s disappointing performance during the midterms.
Split-ticket voting was evident in certain races. In Georgia, for example, the Republican governor was elected. Brian Kemp won easily, while Senate Republican hopeful Herschel Walk was second and was forced into a runoff.
According to the poll, 41% of Democratic-leaning voters made a decision quickly about who they would vote for in the summer of 2016. However, 35% of Republicans followed that lead. It was conducted among 1,160 registered voters and had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.9%.
WPA also found that the Democrats were likely fuelled by attention paid to former President Donald Trump, concerns about candidate quality, and abortion.
According to the poll, 88% voters who voted for Democrats cited “Stopping MAGA Extremists”, while 88% of Democrats and 60% respectively cited abortion as a key component of their vote.
Some Republicans believed that the Mar-a-Lago raid of August might have excited the Republican base. But the poll showed it was more beneficial to Democrats than Republicans.
The GOP’s top issues, including the economy, inflation and crime, seemed to be a boon, but they were ultimately hurt by other factors. In the lead-up to the election, Republican hopes for a wave were fueled by historical trends and low approval ratings for President Joe Biden.
Iovino stated that Americans are more aligned to Republican’s policy priorities. However, controversies surrounding Donald Trump and missed messaging opportunities have turned off many GOP voters and independents who might otherwise have backed Republicans.
Some Republicans have suggested that Trump should be replaced. Trump announced his 2024 campaign last month. Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is one of the prominent voices and potential 2024 candidates. Questions have been raised about Trump’s political viability by Chris Christie, Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Chris Christie.
Trump is still well-liked within the party. But Florida Governor. According to WPA, Ron DeSantis’s net favourability has outperformed him among Republicans by 66 to 44. DeSantis has not yet announced his plans for running in 2024.
The Republicans won 222 seats to flip the House. This was below expectations. The Republicans also failed to win the Senate election, leaving one race in Georgia unfinished.