Republicans March Further into Democratic Turf with 6 Days to Go

With six days to go, the midterm’s top battlegrounds are increasingly on Democratic turf as independents and late-deciders turn against the party in power, even in solidly Democratic areas.


With six days to go, the midterm’s top battlegrounds are increasingly on Democratic turf as independents and late-deciders turn against the party in power, even in solidly Democratic areas.

  • The latest Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll found President Joe Biden’s approval rating remains at a dismal 40 percent. The president’s unpopularity and widespread public anxiety about the economy serve as an anvil around the necks of Democrats up and down the ballot.
  • Attempting to change the subject, Biden will deliver an unscheduled address on Capitol Hill Wednesday evening on “threats to democracy.” Biden adviser Anita Dunn told Axios the address seeks to reframe the midterms around Democratic rhetoric about the “fundamental value of democracy.”
  • It’s hard to point to an electoral battleground where Democrats are not on the defensive.
  • Democrats are increasingly anxious about solidly Democratic New York State. Gov. Kathy Hochul’s double-digit lead over Republican Lee Zeldin has vanished in the race’s closing weeks. What was once unthinkable – a GOP victory in the Empire State – is now solidly within the realm of possibility.
  • Republican Mark Ronchetti’s law and order message is winning him support in Democratic-leaning New Mexico. Biden will visit New Mexico Thursday to rally for Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham in a sign national Democrats are worried about her political standing.
  • New Mexico Democrats made the 2nd District more liberal to try and defeat Republican Rep. Yvette Herrell. However, concerns about Democratic energy policies and her opponent’s one-time embrace of “defund the police” policies are keeping Herrell in the hunt. The first-term Congresswoman led Democrat Gabe Vasquez by double digits in a recent poll.
  • Outgoing Rep. Liz Cheney campaigned on Tuesday for Michigan Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin. Slotkin, a Democratic rising star, is locked in one of the most expensive House races in the country against state Sen. Tom Barrett for the Lansing-area district.

reporting from the left side of the aisle


  • POLITICO reported Republicans are making last-minute seven-figure cash infusions into two solidly Democratic districts. GOP groups evidently sense opportunities in Rep. Sean Casten’s Chicagoland district and an open seat on Long Island vacated by Rep. Kathleen Rice.
  • The New York Times covered Democratic Sen. Patty Murray’s battle for survival in Washington State’s surprisingly competitive Senate race. Republican Tiffany Smiley is mounting a “surprisingly stiff challenge” to the three-decade incumbent, while Murray’s team is worried Democratic complacency could allow Smiley to win in an upset.
  • A new CNN poll found Republicans holding an edge in the generic ballot, buoyed by voter enthusiasm and widespread fears about the state of the economy. Half of all voters said the economy and inflation was their top voting issue, and they break for Republicans 71% to 26%.


  • Sensing opportunity, Fox News reported Republicans are pouring money into districts Biden won by double digits. GOP groups are making six-figure investments in California’s 26th District in suburban Los Angeles, New York’s 25th in the Rochester area, and Pennsylvania’s 12th, which includes the city of Pittsburgh. All three districts are rated by Fox News as “likely Democratic.”
  • The nonpartisan Cook Political Report shifted ten races towards Republicans, per The Washington Examiner. The ten districts – in California, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York– are now considered “lean Democrat” or “tossups,” while Oregon’s 5th now leans Republican.
  • National Review highlighted a series of good polls for underdog Republican gubernatorial candidates Lee Zeldin (New York), Tudor Dixon (Michigan), and New Mexico’s Ronchetti. All three still trail in the polling averages but each are within spitting distance of an upset victory.


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© Dominic Moore, 2022