New CNN Poll Shows Huge Lead for Democrats in Generic Ballot

We’ve been writing all year about the likelihood of a Blue Wave in November’s midterm elections. The latest CNN Poll findings support the notion that 2018 will indeed be the year Democrats take back control of the U.S. House of Representatives, and possibly the U.S. Senate as well.

The poll shows a double digit lead in the generic ballot and also in voter enthusiasm, both key indicators for predicting outcomes in this fall’s elections.

New: CNN POLL CONDUCTED BY SSRS Aug. 9-12
Registered Voters’ Choice for Congress
Democrat          52%
Republican        41%
More Enthusiastic Voters’ Choice for Congress
Democrat          54%
Republican        41%

The Democratic lead increased significantly from eight percentage points in June to an 11 percentage point difference in the most recent August poll.

One of the reasons for the increase in the poll numbers for Democrats is that they are perceived by voters as doing a better job dealing with voters’ top issue this year: healthcare.

Healthcare once again leads the list of issues voters consider most important this fall with the poll showing that 81% of voters believe it’s “extremely or very important” to their vote for Congress. 

Those who believe immigration is a top issue rose from 38% in May to 44% in August, but it is still not important for the majority of registered voters responding to the survey.

Gun policy, however, is still a very important issue for nearly three-fourths of voter, with 73% calling it extremely or very important to their vote. Under the current political environment the majority of voters favor more strict gun laws, so the issue favors Democrats, especially in crucial “swing” congressional districts in the suburbs.

Corruption in Washington is on the rise as an issue that is important to voters, perhaps because of the arrest of one of President Trump’s top supporters — New York Rep. Chris Collins — on insider trading charges. Seventy four percent of respondents called corruption extremely or very important compared to just 64% on trade policy and 71% on tax policy. All of these issues tend to favor Democrats as well.

President Trump and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi were also mentioned as issues in the poll, and certainly these two party leaders have been the subject of many opposition campaign ads this year.

The poll indicates, however that Republican attacks on Rep. Pelosi will not have much impact on the elections. While 68% say that Trump will be an important factor in their vote this fall, only about a third (34%) feel the same way about Pelosi.

Compared to previous elections, 68% of registered voters say they’re more enthusiastic to vote in this election than in the past, and voter enthusiasm also favors Democrats. Among those registered voters who are “most enthusiastic” about voting this year, 54% favor Democrats and just 41% favor Republican candidates.

These poll results are consistent with what we have seen in special elections this year, with much more Democratic voter enthusiasm and much higher turnout than in 2016.

This is just one poll but it certainly does show that with less than three months until election day the chances of a Blue Wave election seems to be increasing.