10/8: Enthusiasm Gap Still Wide for November’s Elections

According to this McClatchy-Marist Poll, 36% of registered voters in the United States are very enthusiastic about voting in this November’s elections.  This is consistent with September’s McClatchy-Marist Poll when about one-third of voters — 33% — expressed the same level of enthusiasm.



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Republican voters continue to be more enthusiastic than Democratic voters.  Currently, a majority of Republicans — 51% — compared with 28% of Democrats report a high level of enthusiasm about November’s elections.  Almost one-third of independent voters — 32% — say the same.  Last month, 46% of Republicans, 30% of Democrats, and 23% of independents said they were very enthusiastic about voting on Election Day.

“The gap in enthusiasm between Democratic and Republican voters remains wide,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “In this regard, the GOP is in the driver’s seat as the fall campaign heads toward the November elections.”

Also worth noting is the wide enthusiasm gap between young and old voters.  48% of voters 60 and older say they are very enthusiastic while 11% of those 18 to 29 share the same degree of enthusiasm.

Table: Enthusiasm to Vote

Pledge? What Pledge?

Republicans in Congress have outlined what they will do if they gain control of Congress in this year’s midterm elections.  But, what do voters know about their Pledge to America?  More than six in ten — 63% — know little or nothing at all about it.  This includes 38% who don’t know much about it and 25% who know nothing at all.  However, 35% know either a great deal or good amount about the pledge.  Included here are 13% who have a great deal of knowledge on the subject and 22% who know a good amount about it.  2% are unsure.

It’s little surprise that more Republican voters than Democratic and independent voters know about the Congressional Republicans’ Pledge to America.  44% of Republicans compared with 30% of Democrats and 32% of independents know a either a great deal or good amount.

Enthusiasm is a factor.  56% of voters who say they are very enthusiastic about voting this November know at least a good amount about the Republicans’ Pledge to America compared with 26% who are enthusiastic and 22% who are not enthusiastic.

Table: Knowledge of Congressional Republicans’ Pledge to America

Nearly Four in Ten More Likely to Vote for Candidate Who Supports Pledge

39% of registered voters say they are more likely to vote for a congressional candidate who supports the Republicans’ Pledge to America.  However, the same proportion — 39% — is less likely to back such a candidate.  Seven percent report it makes no difference to them if a candidate supports the pledge, and 15% are unsure.

Party plays a role here.  Nearly three-quarters of Republicans — 74% — are more likely to back a candidate who supports the pledge while 8% are less likely to vote for such a candidate.  Five percent say it makes no difference to them, and 14% are unsure.  Democrats, however, are on the opposite end of the spectrum.  68% are less likely to support a candidate who is for the Pledge to America while 16% are more likely to pull for such a candidate.  Three percent of Democrats report support for the pledge makes no difference in their choice of candidate while 13% are unsure.  Looking at independent voters, 37% are more inclined while 32% are less inclined to vote for a supporter of the Pledge to America.  13% say it makes no difference to them, and 18% are unsure.

A majority of those in the electorate who are very enthusiastic about voting this November —  52% — say they are more likely to support a candidate who is for the Republicans’ Pledge to America.

Table: Vote for Candidate Who Supports Pledge to America

Overhaul Washington Politics, Say Most Voters

74% say that, when thinking about the way things are done in government in Washington, major changes are needed.  Eight percent say government is broken and beyond repair while 17% think minor changes are needed.  Just 1% believe no changes need to be made.

Table: Status of Government in Washington

Marist Poll Methodology