It’s another ominous sign for Democrats as we approach the 2022 midterm elections. Blue-ish, swing state Michigan in play for Republicans in the polls for the upcoming gubernatorial contest. On top of Joe Biden’s poll numbers collapsing in Michigan amidst a nationwide collapse spells doom for Democratic prospects in the next round of elections.
The latest survey, from the Trafalgar Group, performed in Sept 2021, found that Detroit Police Chief James Craig, a Republican candidate for Michigan governor, is outpacing incumbent Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer for the governor’s office by 6 pts in the polls. According to the sample, Mr. Craig supports some 50.4% of voters, and Governor Whitmer enjoys 44.4% of Michigan voters.
What makes the public sentiment in this bellwether race all the more astonishing is the partisan breakdown of the sample in Trafalgar’s poll. Respondents were 53.4% Democrats, 35% Republicans, and 11.6% of respondents were not affiliated, independent voters. With such a stark lead in party affiliation, almost twenty points ahead, you would think Democrats would have no problem rallying enough support to reelect their sitting governor if the election were held tomorrow.
To face such a severe challenger this far out from the contest at the ballot booth leaves Governor Whitmer vulnerable. With her challenger across the party line leading her in the polls, she will not ignore Craig and run a positive race. She will have to play defense, with a colossal rap sheet of malfeasances and corruptions to answer for in the campaign, and simultaneously run a negative campaign and somehow effectively tar and feather the Detroit Police Chief to the voters. It doesn’t seem likely.
The energy isn’t with the Democrats this time around. They expended far too much political capital for the trappings of power, and the wind isn’t on their backs anymore. Job approval for President Joe Biden collapsed to one-third of the voting electorate in Michigan in a recent poll. Iowa and Virginia, two other critical swing states, also see voters express a whiplash degree of buyer’s remorse of Joe Biden and the Democrats back in power in Washington.
As tightly as the partisan lines are drawn in the House and Senate right now, it wouldn’t take nearly as many gains as the GOP is projected to garner at the ballot in 2022 to regain control of both the upper and lower chamber of Congress. Suppose a viable challenger arises in 2024 to Joe Biden and gets quick control of the Republican field to unify the center-right and makes an appeal to moderate voters for less of the Covid hysteria. In that case, they’ll likely enter the White House with coattails and restore complete Republican control over Washington.
And that state by state war between Democrats and the GOP is likely to continue in the Grand Old Party’s favor like it has been in recent years, taking Craig’s noteworthy burst out of the gate as only one example. As the pendulum swings faster, expect a red wave incoming.