Democrats, Republicans equally engaged ahead of 2020 election: Gallup

Democrats, Republicans equally engaged ahead of 2020 election: Gallup
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Roughly equal amounts of both Democrats and Republicans are highly engaged in the 2020 race over a year before the general election, according to a new Gallup poll released Thursday.

Seventy percent of Democrats and 67 percent of Republicans say they’ve given “quite a lot” of thought to the presidential contest, while 50 percent of independents said the same.

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Gallup notes that the marginal difference between the two parties is notable given Republicans’ historical advantage in enthusiasm in each of the past seven final presidential pre-election surveys and in most polls conducted in past presidential election years.

Gallup has polled thought given to the election since 1952, and its surveys have shown a direct relationship to actual voter turnout among all Americans in past elections. The firm said that compared with measures at similar points in past presidential election cycles, results indicate the 2020 race will see high turnout. 

Gallup noted that Democrats had a significant lead over Republicans in election interest in the 2018 midterms, a cycle in which the party made significant gains in congressional and state election.

The poll found enthusiasm spiking near the ends of the ideological spectrum, with liberal Democrats (including Democratic-leaning independents) and conservative Republicans (including Republican-leaning independents) showing considerably more interest in the 2020 race than moderate and conservative Democrats and liberal or moderate Republicans.

The Democratic election interest could reflect the fact that Democrats are currently fielding a packed primary crowd. 

“Once the general election campaign gets underway, a Republican advantage could emerge later in the campaign as Republican attention ramps up,” Gallup noted. “However, Democrats' staunch opposition to Trump may have ushered in an era when politics is as top-of-mind for Democrats as it is for Republicans.”