Stockton University’s William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy released a new poll Nov. 2 ahead of next week’s midterm elections that found the economy and inflation are at the top of voters’ minds.
The economy was named the top issue by 25% of the poll’s 707 respondents, while another 11% identified inflation or cost of living as the main point.
Abortion was identified by 12% of respondents as the central concern.
The poll asked respondents which party they prefer in the congressional election, with 47% saying they would vote for a generic Democrat while 37% picked a generic Republican candidate. However, more voters said they supported the Republican positions on hot-button issues such as the economy, immigration and crime over Democratic positions.
While more voters supported GOP positions on the economy (43% Republican support, 35% Democratic support), Democrats outpolled Republicans on the issues of abortion (49% Democratic support, 23% Republican support) and health care (50% Democratic support, 26% Republican support) by large margins.
More than half (57%) were very enthusiastic about voting in the midterms and 21% were somewhat enthusiastic. But more Republicans said they were eager to vote: 70% were very enthusiastic compared with 54% of Democrats and 55% of independents.
“There is some good news for Republicans in this poll,” said John Froonjian, director of the Hughes Center. “Support for President Biden is weak (46% favorable, 47% unfavorable), Republican enthusiasm is strong and the top issues in the election are working for the Republicans. One question is whether the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade will motivate Democratic turnout, especially among women.”
The poll also explored the hot-button issue of student loan debt forgiveness, with voters somewhat split over whether to support forgiving up to $20,000 in student loan debt. Half support the plan to cancel debt while 41% oppose it and 9% were not sure. Voters younger than 30 agreed with it the most (71%) and support was lowest among senior citizens (40%).