Republicans Face Uphill Climb in 2018 Elections

Kristi Pronovost Merit Shop Spokesman Blog

By: Brent Sailhamer, Director of Government Affairs, ABC Keystone

With less than 90 days until the November general election, the “blue wave” that media outlets predicted – signaling unprecedented victories for Democrats nationwide – might be fizzling, but victory is still looking like a long shot for top-ticket Republicans.

Republican candidates – particularly incumbents – are seeing support coalesce despite tepid fundraising earlier in the year. For instance, vulnerable Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, who represents Pennsylvania’s 1st district making up much of the moderate Bucks County, was struggling for support throughout the spring. Now, however, Fitzpatrick has received an influx of contributions from conservative groups as well as labor unions, who have traditionally backed Democrat opponents.  The trend is consistent throughout Pennsylvania, as it looks as though the blue wave may not take effect.

At the top of the ticket, however, Republicans continue to struggle. Recent polls have put both Scott Wagner and Rep. Lou Barletta behind their incumbent opponents by 16 points or more, leading many to believe that the election is out of reach for both candidates. Deeper analysis reveals strong favorable poll results for Governor Wolf as well, indicating that voters believe he is performing his duty as Governor. Favorables are weaker for U.S. Senator Bob Casey, showing that voters are unsure whether he is performing his duties in Washington.

Only time will tell what will happen in November, but it looks as though there is a lot of ground to cover to get to the finish line.

August 16, 2018