Republicans enter the final weeks of the contest for control of Congress with a narrow but distinctive advantage as the economy and inflation have surged as the dominant concerns, giving the party momentum to take back power from Democrats in next month’s midterm elections, a New York Times/Siena College poll has found.
The poll shows that 49 percent of likely voters said they planned to vote for a Republican to represent them in Congress on Nov. 8, compared with 45 percent who planned to vote for a Democrat. The result represents an improvement for Republicans since September, when Democrats held a one-point edge among likely voters in the last Times/Siena poll.
Republicans opened up a 10-percentage point lead among crucial independent voters, compared with a three-point edge for Democrats in September, as undecided voters moved toward Republicans.
The biggest shift came from women who identified as independent voters. In September, they favored Democrats by 14 points. Now, independent women backed Republicans by 18 points.
The survey showed that the economy remained a far more potent political issue in 2022 than abortion.