Posted On October 3, 2022

Republicans are once again favored by most voters to control Congress after the midterm elections, according to a new survey.

In September, 47% of voters preferred that Republicans control both the House of Representatives and Senate in the next Congress, compared to 44% of Democrats, per the survey, conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute. The figures are a marked reversal from August, where 50% preferred Democrats – their highest score throughout the year – to 43% for Republicans, while July showed both parties in a statistical tie at 47% each.

Voters largely disapprove of the Biden administration’s handling of important policy issues, the survey showed. On inflation, Biden gained the approval of just 30% of respondents, with 82% identifying it as an “extremely important” issue they were facing.

Biden also received low approval in other key areas, including crime (32%), election security and voting rights (43%), jobs (43%), immigration (31%) and abortion (31%).

“The issue picture favors Republicans,” said Patrick Murray, director of the institute. Speaking about the results, he added that “because the congressional map favors the GOP, Democrats need to do more than ‘keep it close’ in order to hold onto their House majority.”

The survey also confirmed general assumptions about differences in party issue preferences this election. Approximately 8 in 10 Republicans ranked “inflation, crime and immigration” as their top campaign priorities, while an equivalent number of Democrats cited “climate change, racial inequality, elections and voting, gun control and abortion” as top issues, according to a Monmouth University press release regarding the survey.

“Democrats are all over the place when it comes to their key issues. This makes it difficult for the party to create a cohesive messaging strategy to motivate its base,” said Murray. He also noted that Democrats’ “base messaging doesn’t hold as much appeal for independents as the GOP issue agenda does.”

Moreover, he claimed that “Biden does not provide a rallying point for Democratic voters on some of the issues, such as abortion, that his party is leaning on to motivate its own base.” Murray’s comments and the Monmouth survey come as the midterm elections ‘arrive just 35 days away from the Nov. 8 midterms.’

The survey polled 806 adults eligible to vote and had a margin of error of 3.5%. FiveThirtyEight, a polling aggregator, gives Monmouth University polls a grade of ‘A’ for accuracy.

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