Tags: America's Forum | Ebola Outbreak | ISIS/Islamic State | Polls | Midterm elections | minorities

Pollster Zogby: Dems Need Minorities, Young Vote

By    |   Friday, 17 October 2014 11:38 AM

The Ebola crisis could amount to an "October surprise" damaging Democrats' chances in the midterms, according to pollster James Zogby, who appeared Friday on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV.

"Anything that happens this late in the campaign which prevents one side from getting its message out, and in this case obviously the president and the Democrats, really detracts," he said. "Especially in all of these Senate races in particular that are so close and where they need to have a focused message to get out over the next couple of weeks."

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As of last week, some polling numbers indicated that nearly half of independent voters remained undecided, a possible sign that they may be "so turned off that they're not going to vote at all."

When queried about which party was better at handling particular issues, Republicans had an edge on foreign policy and national security, but there are too many "wild card" independents to make an accurate prediction, Zogby said.

Democrats need to rally their base if they want a chance at capturing some of the tight Senate races across the country.

"You do have momentum on the part of Republican candidates in, say, Louisiana and Arkansas that you've mentioned and in a few other states, but even still, Alaska's another, Colorado, but ... these are 2, 3, even 4-point leads. Those could be easily negated if the Democratic candidates can get momentum. Now here's the conundrum. What kind of momentum do they need? They need to get their base out."

Dems need African-American, Hispanic, and young voters to turn out on Election Day, when the economy and various crises around the globe will be key factors in how votes are cast, according to Zogby.

"It's the overriding issue, and the overriding issue is a feeling of security and that's a big umbrella," he said. "So on one hand, certainly, it is the economy, and even with some numbers showing some improvement in the economy, this poll reveals that Americans just aren't feeling it, whether it's unemployment or fear of losing a job or inflation at the gas pump or the supermarket.

"But that goes hand-in-hand also with ISIS and Ebola and Ukraine, in the sense that our whole world is sort of potentially crashing all about us. It creates a foul mood," Zogby said.

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He said Democrats have the advantage in Virginia, while in Kentucky, Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, who is challenging Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, may have made an election-losing error when she refused in a debate to say whether she voted for Obama for president.

"My hunch, after having been doing this for four decades, is that she managed to kick the president and herself in the butt at the same time and that's not an easy thing to do. She hurt herself badly," Zogby said. "What do you want from a U.S. senator, particularly if you're undecided? You want the courage of convictions and somebody to tell you how you're going to vote and what she did was, she went bam, bam, on both of those."

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The Ebola crisis could amount to an "October surprise" damaging Democrats' chances in the midterms, according to pollster James Zogby, who appeared Friday on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV.
Midterm elections, minorities, Ebola, ISIS, Democrats, young vote
Friday, 17 October 2014 11:38 AM
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