Republicans lead Democrats ahead of US midterm elections

US voters prefer Republicans over Democrats on immigration and crime, meaning the importance Republicans place on border security and tackling crime could help them in the Nov. 8 midterm elections, a Reuters/Ipsos poll shows.

The poll, conducted between Sept. 27 and Oct. 3, underscores the GOP’s advantages ahead of an election that sees it as the favorite to win control of the House of Representatives and possibly the Senate (both houses of the US Congress).

40% of registered voters say the Republicans are the party capable of dealing with immigration, compared to 32% who think the Democrats are the better choice in that regard, BTA adds.

For solving crime problems, 39% choose the Republicans, and 30% – the Democrats. The rest answered that they did not know, they chose another party or independent candidates.

While high inflation remains a major concern for American voters, crime and immigration are seen as important topics in motivating core Republican voters to get out and vote, as well as attracting votes from independents and moderate Democrats.

Overall in the survey, 30% of registered voters said their top concern was inflation, 5% chose immigration and 4% cited crime.

There are some signs that crime and immigration – including illegal immigration – are increasing.

A study published last month showed that the number of murders fell in the first half of 2022 compared with 12 months earlier, but robberies and assaults increased.

The foreign-born share of the US population rose to 14.3% in 2021, the highest level since the early 1900s, while arrests of migrants trying to cross the US-Mexico border increased to record high numbers since the inauguration of Democratic President Joe Biden in 2021.

The Republican advantage on crime and immigration is most pronounced among some of the party’s core constituencies, such as non-Hispanic whites without a college degree. Among those respondents in the Reuters/Ipsos poll, the share of Republicans was twice as large as that of Democrats.

But Republican strength extends far beyond this demographic group.

Among women who said they live in the suburbs – a group that played a decisive role in the last US election – Republicans lead Democrats by seven percentage points on immigration and by 8 percentage points on crime.

People with college degrees — a core group of Democratic-leaning voters — voted more Democratic on immigration issues. But they are almost evenly split between the two parties on crime.

Political strategists from both parties say Republicans are using some voters’ anxiety about crime and immigration in part to counter Democrats’ strong positions on abortion, following a June ruling by the conservative-dominated U.S. Supreme Court that struck down the constitutional right to abortion. Six percent of registered voters in the survey listed changing abortion laws as their top concern.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll showed suburban women favored Democrats over Republicans 40 percent to 24 percent on the abortion issue.

4,415 people from all over the country participated in the online survey.

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