The Political Report – October 4, 2023

A record-high percentage of Americans trust Republicans to manage the economy over Democrats, according to a new Gallup survey.

Some 53% of respondents said the GOP were more likely to “do a better job of keeping the country prosperous,” versus 39% who favored Democrats.

Axios: Some Democrats fear Bidenomics branding is backfiring.

A new Monmouth poll finds just 37% of voters express at least some enthusiasm about the possibility of Donald Trump being the Republican presidential nominee and 32% are enthusiastic about Joe Biden getting the nod for the Democrats.

Majorities are not at all enthusiastic about either Trump (52%) or Biden (53%) being at the top of their respective party tickets.

“The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee is pumping another $1 million into Virginia’s high-stakes legislative elections this fall, doubling its commitment for the year,” Axios reports.

“For Democrats, abortion is on the ballot in Virginia’s off-year election, when all 140 seats are up in the state House and Senate.”

“Publicly, top Democrats say they support President Biden running for re-election and think he can win. Privately, their worries are increasing but they are resigned to the idea that he isn’t going anywhere, and there is no viable Plan B,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

“Conversations with more than a dozen leading Democrats revealed the pervasive, but mostly private, sense of worry that hangs over the race. Some compare this moment to the 2016 cycle when many top Democrats brushed aside Hillary Clinton’s vulnerabilities only to watch her ultimately lose to Trump. But this is in many ways a different case—a sitting president facing clear frustration from voters, including those within his own party.”

The third fundraising quarter of the year, covering the period from July 1 to Sept. 30, has ended, and federal candidates will have to file campaign finance reports with the FEC by Oct. 15. But as per usual, campaigns with hauls they’re eager to tout are leaking numbers early, which we’ve gathered below.

Rep. Matt Gaetz’s (R-FL) father, former state Sen. Don Gaetz (R), announced his intention to seek office once again, the Pensacola News Journal reports.

However, Gaetz said his decision to run is in no way based upon speculation that his son has been discussed as a potential candidate for governor in 2026.

“With Tim Scott struggling to break through in Iowa and New Hampshire, a top campaign adviser is privately lobbying donors to stick with him until the primary reaches his home state of South Carolina,” Politico reports.

CNN: “Driving this stepped up offensive are messages intended to convince Republicans that Trump is somehow unrecognizable compared to the figure who upended politics in 2016, nor the same person as the president who left the White House after defeat in 2021. Other 2024 hopefuls have similarly hoped to contrast Trump with his previous campaigns.”

“Noticeably absent, though, is any semblance of a clear frontal attack on Trump’s pending criminal indictments and civil lawsuits from DeSantis – even as Trump on Monday was seated in a Manhattan courtroom for a trial over his company’s alleged gross inflation of its assets.”

Donald Trump’s campaign called on the RNC to cancel presidential debates so the party can focus instead on how Democrats are supposedly stealing the 2024 election.

A new Monmouth poll finds that 76% of American voters believe that Joe Biden is too old to effectively serve another term as president, while just 48% say the same about Donald Trump. The survey did not mention how old either Trump or Biden are, so the results represent voter perceptions of their age. Even though Biden and Trump were born just three years apart, there are wildly different senses of how old they are.

That’s fair enough because people age differently. It’s a legitimate factor to consider. But age is just one factor in a person’s ability to serve effectively as president.

What if the poll asked which candidate do you think is crazier? I’m fairly confident the results would show voters think Trump is the one more unhinged from reality. In fact, it’s obvious after reviewing the highlights of Trump’s speech in California over the weekend. That would seem an important trait to know while evaluating the effectiveness of two candidates.

So if we’re going to poll continuously about the two candidates’ age, shouldn’t we also test other factors of mental competence?

Alabama Republican Secretary of State Wes Allen on Friday dropped his appeal of the federal court ruling that blocked the congressional gerrymander the GOP drew earlier this year after the court ruled that their 2021 map violated the Voting Rights Act. This move essentially guarantees that the state will use a new court-drawn map for 2024 that creates a second district where Black voters could elect their preferred candidate, though Republicans could still sue to try to invalidate these boundaries later on.

Plaintiffs on Friday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a recent ruling by hardline conservative judges on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that prevents a lower court from going ahead with a hearing this month on how Louisiana should redraw its congressional map for 2024 to empower Black voters.

A ballot initiative that would establish an independent redistricting commission in Ohio cleared an initial huddle on Monday when Republican state Attorney General Dave Yost finally approved the proposed ballot summary for the measure after rejecting supporters’ first two versions. Following Yost’s sign-off, the state’s Ballot Board, which is also controlled by Republicans, must decide within 10 days whether the proposed constitutional amendment complies with state law, including the limitation that amendments only address a single subject.

If the board also approves the proposal, then supporters would finally be able to start gathering the roughly 413,000 voter signatures needed for their measure to appear on the ballot in November 2024. If it qualifies for the ballot and is adopted by voters, the measure would invalidate the GOP’s existing gerrymanders and task a citizen-led commission with drawing fairer maps for the 2026 elections and beyond. Check out our in-depth look at the amendment for further details on how it would work.

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

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