LUNCHTIME POLITICS: Reconciliation Bill – Inflation vs. Unemployment – Texas Abortion Law

Your Daily Polling Update for Thursday, October 14, 2021

Up 2 since Tuesday

RON’S COMMENT: Today’s average is based on four polls, ranging from 42% (Economist) to 50% (CNN). Biden’s disapproval rating averages 52% today (down 1 from Tuesday), putting him 7 points net negative.

Among voters statewide

RON’S COMMENT: Another poll showing McAuliffe leading a close contest. This one surveyed voters who have already voted, those “likely” to vote and those who lean to one candidate or the other…. The average of the four latest polls gives McAuliffe a lead of 3 points…. Other poll findings: 

  • Of issues tested, 58% of voters say vaccination mandates are the most motivating in terms of voting. Second is “feelings about the candidates” (54%).
  • McAuliffe leads Youngkin on handling the coronavirus issue, 45-41
  • Youngkin leads McAuliffe on handling the economy, 46-41. 
  • 47% of voters say Youngkin supports Trump too much, 13% say not enough and 40% say about right.
  • 45% of voters say McAuliffe supports Biden too much, 8% say not enough and 47% say about right.
  • McAuliffe wins voters who say they have already voted, 61-37.
  • 55% of voters say they will vote in person on Election Day.
  • 26% of Democrats say they wish the party had nominated somebody other than McAuliffe.
  • 57% of voters in Virginia say the state is doing “very” or “somewhat” well.
  • 58% of voters in Virginia say the state’s economy is “very” or “fairly” good.

Among voters nationwide

Which do you think is a more important problem facing the U.S. today: unemployment or inflation? 

  • Unemployment: 16%
  • Inflation: 32%
  • Both equal: 45%

RON’S COMMENT: This Economist poll finds that Democrats put inflation over unemployment by a slight 23% to 22%; Republicans put inflation over unemployment by a wider 38% to 12% margin; Independents put inflation over unemployment by 36% to 14%…. Note that this poll was conducted before the new unemployment stats were released yesterday.

Among adults nationwide

As you may know, Congress is considering two bills which include significant pieces of Joe Biden’s policy agenda. One is an infrastructure bill, which has passed the Senate with bipartisan support, but has not yet passed the House. The second is an economic bill, which would expand social safety net programs and enacts policies to combat climate change. The next few questions are about these two bills. Thinking about the economic bill, which would you prefer… for Congress to: 

  • Pass a bill that enacts all of the proposed social safety net and climate change policies: 41% 
  • Pass a bill that enacts fewer of those policies, but which costs less money: 30% 
  • Not pass any version of the bill: 29%

RON’S COMMENT: This CNN poll finds that 71% of adults want some type of social spending bill, but that 59% want either a bill that enacts fewer of those policies, but which costs less money” or no bill at all…. What’s in a name? Arguably, CNN’s description of the legislation as “significant” and as “an economic bill, which would expand social safety net programs and enacts policies to combat climate change” could be challenged as pushing responses toward the favorable side…. Note that this poll question was asked of all adults and not just registered voters.
From what you know about the two bills, do you think you and your family would, in general, be better off, worse off, or about the same if they become law? 

  • Better off: 25%
  • Worse off: 32%
  • About the same: 43%

RON’S COMMENT: This CNN follow-up poll question did not probe feelings about the “economic bill,” but rather about the “two bills” (meaning: the infrastructure bill and the “economic”/reconciliation bill.) By asking it this way, it appears that CNN may have again pushed responses toward the favorable side; it’s also a bit confusing. The response, nonetheless, finds more voters saying they’d be “worse off” than “better off” as a result of both bills passing (32% vs. 25%)…. This poll question was asked of all adults and not just registered voters.

Among adults nationwide

Please indicate whether you think each of the following political officeholders deserves to be reelected or not. 
% = Deserve re-election/Do NOT deserve re-election

  • Most Democratic members of Congress: 46%/54% 
  • Most Republican members of Congress: 37%/63% 
  • The U.S. representative in your congressional district: 55%/45% 

RON’S COMMENT: Majorities of the electorate say most members of Congress from either party do not deserve re-election, although a majority say their own representative does. While the numbers for Democrats are not so good, they’re even worse for Republicans…. This CNN poll question was asked of all adults and not just registered voters, which is odd for a poll question dealing with an election.

Among voters nationwide

The Texas State Legislature passed a law banning abortions after 6 weeks of pregnancy, and allowing people to sue healthcare providers for facilitating abortions. Do you approve or disapprove of this law?

  • Approve Texas law: 39%
  • Disapprove Texas law: 52%
  • Not sure: 9%

RON’S COMMENT: This Economist poll finds that 69% of Republicans, 12% of Democrats and 41% of independents approve of the Texas abortion law. 21% of Republicans, 79% of Democrats and 49% of independents disapprove of the law.

Presidential job rating average based on recent nationwide polls.
VIRGINIA: CBS News, Oct. 4-11

Publication schedule: Lunchtime Politics publishes when important new polling data is available, usually at least once a week. When we get closer to the next round of elections, we will resume daily publication. Thanks to all our readers and best of health, Ron

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