The Polling Report for October 28, 2017

A new Wason Center poll in Virginia shows Ralph Northam (D) leading Ed Gillespie (R) by seven points in the race for governor, 50% to 43%, with Libertarian Cliff Hyra at 3%.


A new Middle Tennessee State University poll finds Sen. Bob Corker’s (R-TN) approval rate sank from 52% in February to 45% after his public fight with President Trump.  Worse, just 37% of Republicans now say they approve of Corker as compared to 61% in February.


The Pew Research Center conducted a survey over the summer that is different from your normal poll.  Pew asked respondents several ideological questions, and then used statistical techniques to try to figure out the clearest way to divide respondents’ views into a series of coherent groups.  Here is what they found:

Pew ended up dividing politically engaged voters into eight groups. Among Republicans, the “Core Conservatives” — traditional GOP voters — is the largest and most engaged group. “Country First Conservatives, who we might think of as anti-immigration Trump fans, are relatively small in comparison. Then, two GOP-leaning groups that tend to get less attention in punditry are “Market Skeptic Republicans,” who stand out for their concern about the economic system favoring the powerful, and “New Era Enterprisers” (they’re pretty moderate on social issues but economically conservative).

For Democrats, meanwhile, the party’s base is represented by “Solid Liberals.” But Pew also concludes there are blocs of “Opportunity Democrats” (who are less concerned with discrimination and tend to have a more optimistic view of how hard work can lead to success), “Disaffected Democrats” (who think the American dream is out of reach and are generally cynical about the system), and “Devout and Diverse” (kind of a grab bag of mostly Democrat-leaning voters who are more conservative on one issue or another). Finally, there are “Bystanders” who aren’t engaged in the political process at all.

Why are our politics polarized?  Because, obviously, the more politically and civicly engaged group are the solid liberals and the core conservatives.   Duh.

Support for lowering corporate taxes comes overwhelmingly from core conservatives. Two of the other right-leaning groups are split on the matter, and respondents categorized in another GOP-leaning group — “Market Skeptical Republicans” — are far more likely to say they want corporate taxes raised.

Another question in the survey asked respondents whether immigrants “are a burden on our country because they take our jobs, housing, and health care,” or whether they “strengthen our country because of their hard work and talents.” And 65 percent of overall respondents said they agreed with the latter statement, while only 26 percent agreed with the former one.

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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