Poll: Republicans voters more motivated to beat Democrats than back their candidate

Republican voters are more likely to be motivated by a desire to defeat the opposing party than Democratic voters, according to a new Hill-HarrisX poll.

In June 22-23 survey, members of both parties were nearly equal in saying that they preferred their party because of its policy ideas and platforms but Democratic respondents were somewhat more inclined to say that they liked their party's candidates. Republicans, by contrast, were somewhat more likely to say that they were more concerned with defeating Democrats than liking their candidates.

Fifteen percent of Republican respondents said that they liked the GOP's candidates while 21 percent of Democrats said they like party's. Twenty-four percent of Republicans said that stopping the other party was why they usually voted Republican. Nineteen percent of Democrats said the same.

Respondents who identified as independents were less likely than partisans to say that the party they generally preferred had ideas and policies that they liked. Fifty-one percent of independent participants said this. By contrast, 61 percent of Republicans said that they liked the GOP's policy ideas and platform while 60 percent of Democrats said the same about their party.

The survey also found some differences across ideological groups with more conservative respondents being more likely to say that opposing the other party was the prime reason behind their voting.

Twenty-nine percent of those surveyed who identified as conservative said stopping the other party was the main reason behind their voting decisions, 11 percent more than the 18 percent of liberals who said the same.

The poll was conducted June 22-23 online among a statistically representative panel of 1,000 registered voters. The survey has a 95 percent confidence level and a 3.1 percent sampling margin of error.

— Matthew Sheffield