This analyst has seen data produced by both parties on prospective 2022 midterm election results and has talked to pros in both parties about the information. Republicans and Democrats are in agreement that the Republicans are likely to take over Congress. But according to Democrats only one thing can stop that: Donald Trump.
However, the polls included in Democrat data were taken before the Biden Bugout. Now, using Trump as a bogeyman may not be enough to rescue Democrats from doom. While this data is not yet generally available to the press, party pros have leaked parts around town to certain prestigious writers and selected drinking pals. This analyst falls into the latter category.
GOP numbers currently show a 26 seat pickup in the House and a 3 seat pickup in the Senate, thus giving Republicans solid control of both chambers. State reapportionments should help the Republicans. If Biden is still president, and many think he won’t be, GOP message control will emphasize Afghanistan, the border, and an issue tba. If it’s Harris it’ll be Afghanistan (where was she?), the Border (her given responsibility) and another tba.
The political climate in the states should also trend Republican. In short, over a year before election day, Republicans are feeling confident. But a day, much less a year, is an eternity in politics. Thus, the concrete is far from dry.
Realistic Democrats know they are in trouble. Their latest numbers show a loss of 15 in the House and 2 in the Senate. Both mean they lose Congress. Party pros seem about evenly divided on whether to make Biden walk the plank over Afghanistan. Some think replacing him with Harris shows too much instability and chaos. Others think he is a festering sore on their 2022 chances, ready to turn into gangrene at the slightest Republican injection of campaign attack media. Either way, the options for them are not pleasant.
A significant number of Democrats think only one thing can save Congress for them, a high profile role for Donald Trump in the Republican midterm campaign. They believe they can use the specter of a politically revivified Trump to scare swing voters away from the Republicans. There may be something to that, but only to a point.
If the Republicans play Trump right, and he agrees to do it, he will be limited to friendly turf in a massive get out the vote effort amongst his followers. If he strays too far from that, or lets his rampant id run amok, then the Newtonian Third Law reaction the Democrats are looking for could take place. There are more than several Republicans who worry about this as well. Would a Trump starring role save the Democrat Congress? Unlikely. But it wouldn’t help the Republicans one bit. Trump should understand this if he is considering a 2024 run for the White House, and act accordingly.