By Dave Andrusko
I hope if you haven’t already voted, you’ll stand in line tomorrow for what promises to be a genuinely pivotal election. As we have for weeks in this series, NRL News Today will begin with some current headlines and then fill in what they mean in greater depth.
- A Bottomless Pinocchio for Biden — and other recent gaffes. Glenn Kessler, Factchecker for the Washington Post.
- Democrats confront their nightmare scenario on election eve as economic concerns overshadow abortion and democracy worries. Stephen Collinson, CNN.
- GOP is no longer the party of old, white men. Meet the conservative women on the rise. Ingrid Jacques, USA TODAY
- WSJ poll: The Red Wave is real — and also Black and Brown. Ed Morrissey, Hotair.
- GOP Gaining Support Among Black and Latino Voters, WSJ Poll Finds. Joshua Jamerson and Aaron Zitner, Wall Street Journal.
Glenn Kessler’s headline—“A Bottomless Pinocchio for Biden — and other recent gaffes”—would suggest he is going to tackle the unending verbal miscues that pour out of the President’s mouth which Kessler so lovingly did for President Trump. Instead “a Bottomless Pinocchio” refers to a single statement demonstratively incorrect that is repeated at least 20 times. The fact remains that President Biden has his own stream of whoppers which he repeats over and over and over and over again.
Stephen Collinson’s CNN piece is actually by and large quite good. He writes
Democrats close their midterm election campaign Monday facing the nightmare scenario they always feared – with Republicans staging a gleeful referendum on Joe Biden’s struggling presidency and failure to tame inflation.
Hopes that Democrats could use the Supreme Court’s overturning of the right to an abortion and a flurry of legislative wins to stave off the classic midterm election rout of a party in power are now a memory. Biden faces a dark political environment because of the 40-year-high in the cost of living – and his hopes of a swift rebound next year are clouded by growing fears of a recession.
It is now the near consensus among political reporters that by putting enormous amounts of money and endless campaign ads into abortion advocacy, Democrats grossly overplayed their hand. They are simply not talking about the issues that are roiling the electoral waters.
Ingrid Jacques’s USA Today piece, for many people, is likely a real eye-opener. GOP women are running for governor, the Senate, and the House of Representatives in record numbers. That builds on current successes. “According to the Center for American Women and Politics, 123 women now serve in the U.S. House of Representatives: 91 Democrats and 32 Republicans. Out of 24 women in the Senate, eight are Republican,” Jacques writes.
Ed Morrissey, writing at Hotair, and Joshua Jamerson and Aaron Zitner writing for the Wall Street Journal, explain the inroads Republicans have made in two constituencies—Blacks and Latinos—that not so long ago seemed impenetrable:
The Republican Party is winning support from a larger share of Black voters than in other recent elections and has improved its standing in the past few months among Latino voters, the latest Wall Street Journal poll finds, adding to evidence of the party’s increasing appeal among groups that have overwhelmingly favored Democratic candidates.
About 17% of Black voters said they would pick a Republican candidate for Congress over a Democrat in Journal polls both in late October and in August. That is a substantially larger share than the 8% of Black voters who voted for former President Donald Trump in 2020 and the 8% who backed GOP candidates in 2018 House races, as recorded by AP VoteCast, a large survey of voters who participated in those elections.
Among Latino voters, Democrats held a lead of 5 percentage points over Republicans in the choice of a congressional candidate in the Journal’s October survey, a narrower advantage than the Democrats’ 11-point lead in August.
A fascinating nugget appears later in their story:
Still, the difference by education among Latino voters suggests to some analysts that the Republican Party, which has drawn large shares of white, working-class voters in recent years, is now drawing working-class voters of other racial and ethnic groups. “Black working-class and Hispanic working-class people have a lot more in common with white working-class people than many people have been willing to believe,” said Ruy Teixeira, a demographer at the American Enterprise Institute who writes often on the subject.
Of course, in the last story before the elections, we would be remiss if we didn’t talk about the Republican gains among women, especially women who are Independents. Jacques writes
A poll The Wall Street Journal released last week found that white suburban women, who make up 20% of the voting base, favor Republicans in congressional races by 15 percentage points. It’s a significant shift from August, when these voters said they supported Democrats by 12 points.
This is the target bloc Democrats had hoped to win over on abortion rights, but it’s the economy and the direction of the country that are motivating these women.
Similarly, a recent New York Times/Sienna College survey shows independent women favor Republicans by 18 points, a huge shift from when they supported Democrats by 14 points in September
None of this will matter if we don’t vote. This is the first national election since Dobbs pitched Roe v. Wade overboard. Whatever the polls say ahead of time, it will be compared to how the electorate actually votes.