- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 6, 2014

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

It’s a “challenging midterm landscape for Democrats,” declares the Pew Research Center, which reveals new survey findings that 47 percent of Americans now are Republicans or lean that way, compared to 43 percent who are in the Democratic camp. Six months ago, Democrats held a six-point lead, 49 percent to 43 percent. In the meantime, there’s change afoot, and it’s not of the old hopey-changey variety.

Voters are weary. And midterm election prospects are “daunting for Democrats” the researchers say.

“Thinking about the next presidential election, 65 percent would like to see the next president offer different policies and programs from the Obama administration while 30 percent want Obama’s successor to offer similar policies,” declared the new survey of registered voters, conducted by the Pew Research Center for People & the Press in conjunction with USA Today.

Voters are crabby about Congress on both sides of the aisle: 32 percent of the respondents approve of the Democratic job performance while 23 percent approve of the way Republicans are handling their jobs. The GOPers do have an edge in the economy, however, with 43 percent of the respondents agreeing that Republican policies would do more for the economy than Democratic policies, cited by 39 percent.

And of delicate interest to GOP strategists:

“At this stage of the campaign, independent voters are 16 points more likely to say they plan to vote Republican (49 percent) than Democratic (33 percent) in the midterm election.” the poll states.

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