2014 poll: Voter enthusiasm sinks
By: Jonathan Topaz
May 12, 2014 06:10 AM EDT
Voter enthusiasm is at its lowest level for midterm elections in at least 20 years, a new poll says.
According to a Gallup survey, 53 percent of voters report being less enthusiastic to vote in this election than in previous midterm elections and 35 percent report being more enthusiastic, marking a major dip in voter enthusiasm from the 2010 midterm elections.
Republicans hold an edge over Democrats in voter enthusiasm. GOP and right-leaning independent voters have an 8-point enthusiasm deficit, with 42 percent of voters more enthusiastic about voting and 50 percent of voters less enthusiastic. But Democrats and left-leaning independents have a far greater deficit, 23 percentage points, with just 32 percent of voters feeling more enthusiastic and 55 percent of voters feeling less so.
Republicans are less galvanized than they were in 2010, when the GOP scored huge victories to take back the House and win several seats in the Senate. In 2010, GOP voters reported a 34-point net enthusiasm surplus, by far the highest level reported in the past 20 years.
For the past three midterm elections — 2010, 2006 and 2002 — the party whose supporters have higher enthusiasm ratings has done better in November.
The Gallup poll was conducted April 24-30 with 1,513 adults conducted on landlines and cellphones. The margin for error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.