Some Republicans deep in Trump country have regained ground. But the handful of bright spots have been outweighed by a tidal wave of Democratic spending and voter support in the closing weeks of the midterm election, according to public and private polling, interviews with strategists from both parties and a POLITICO analysis of TV spending figures. In recent days, House Republicans have rushed to fortify a surprise collection of GOP-held districts in a half-dozen states that were never expected to be competitive.
They indicate a Republican Party, swamped by cash-flush Democratic candidates and outside groups, still losing support among women and suburban voters ahead of the midterms and struggling to bring home voters that helped put the GOP in control of the House for most of the last quarter-century.
“Clearly the Kavanaugh confirmation was an inflection point to activate the Republican base, and even pull over some Democratic men,” said Rob Stutzman, a Republican consultant based in California. “But that’s an effect that benefits the Senate and leaves suburban members of Congress stranded. It’s unlikely we won back suburban Orange County voters.”