What Republicans and Democrats are focusing on for the midterm elections

Joel Benenson, Democratic strategist:

Well, I think there are two things.

I have a mantra when it comes to elections. I usually say it’s about big things, not small things. They’re talking about the future, not the past, and it’s about their life, not your life. This does not mean that the biography of the candidates does not matter.

I think there’s a lot more going on in people’s lives today than economic concerns, which are very salient in the data. there is no doubt. But on a range of other issues — and I think we’ve seen this in Kansas recently — there are things that really motivate center voters, for example.

Independent voters in the survey that we conducted together, Neil and I — and we work together quite frequently — are very committed to wanting to protect choice and women’s right to choose. On tax fairness issues, they are closer to where the Democrats are than where the Republicans are. They don’t think corporations need tax breaks. They think workers and average people do.

So I think we can say the economy is going to be front and center but then which party is going to be able to make a values ​​argument that’s going to connect with those core voters I think is the party that’s going do better. And I’m not sure Republicans are in that place, even on things like lowering the cost of prescription drugs, which — and letting Medicare negotiate, which Republicans just voted against.

The biggest buyer of prescription drugs in this country, and we’re not going to let them negotiate the prices down for the American people, especially the elderly? It’s absurd.


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