November 26th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
7 years ago

CNN/ORC poll: Democrats lose 2014 edge following Obamacare uproar

Washington (CNN) - What a difference a month makes.

A new CNN/ORC International poll indicates a dramatic turnaround in the battle for control of Congress in next year's midterm elections.

Democrats a month ago held a 50%-42% advantage among registered voters in a generic ballot, which asked respondents to choose between a Democrat or Republican in their congressional district without identifying the candidates.

That result came after congressional Republicans appeared to overplay their hand in the bitter fight over the federal government shutdown and the debt ceiling.

But the Democratic lead has disappeared. A new CNN/ORC poll indicates the GOP now holds a 49%-47% edge.

The new survey was conducted last week and released Tuesday.

The 10-point swing follows a political uproar over Obamacare, which included the botched rollout of and controversy over insurance policy cancelations due primarily to the new health law.

The turnaround in the CNN/ORC poll follows similar shifts in recent national surveys from Quinnipiac University and Fox News.

At a news conference two weeks ago, President Barack Obama acknowledged that problems plaguing the startup of the new healthcare law could hurt Democrats.

"There is no doubt that our failure to rollout the ACA smoothly has put a burden on Democrats, whether they are running or not because they stood up and supported this effort through thick and thin," Obama said.

The CNN/ORC poll, released as the President makes a West Coast campaign fundraising swing on behalf of fellow Democrats, indicates both parties making gains within their base.

"It looks like the biggest shifts toward the Republicans came among white voters, higher-income Americans, and people who live in rural areas, while Democrats have gained strength in the past month among some of their natural constituencies, such as non-white voters and lower-income Americans," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

"If those patterns persist into 2014, it may indicate that Obamacare is popular among those who it was designed to help the most, but unpopular among the larger group of voters who are personally less concerned about health insurance and health care," Holland said.

Republicans currently have a 17-seat advantage in the U.S. House with the Democrats holding a 55-45 majority in the Senate.

While the generic ballot question is one of the most commonly used indicators when it comes to the battle for Congress, the poll results are a long way from predicting what will happen next November.

"There is just under a year to go before any votes are actually cast and the 'generic ballot' question is not necessarily a good predictor of the actual outcome of 435 separate elections," Holland cautions.

"A year before the 2010 midterms, for example, the Democrats held a six-point lead on the generic ballot but the GOP wound up regaining control of the House in that election cycle, thanks to an historic 63-seat pickup," he said.

The poll was conducted November 18-20 for CNN by ORC International, with 843 adult Americans, including 749 registered voters, questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

Filed under: 2014 • CNN/ORC poll • Congress
soundoff (885 Responses)
  1. Shutupalready

    HARP, Cash for Clunkers, Obamacare, Green Jobs, etc. etc. etc. What will they fail at next?

    November 26, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    They lie now they don't want to take responsibility for their lies to the American people. What till those with employers insurance coverage start getting the bad news of either, being set off to get their own on the exchanges or they will have to start spending money for their insurance that once was a benefit, but because the cost shot up, the employer ask them to cover some of the new cost.

    November 26, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  3. J.R.Roberts

    Surprise…surprise. Many people aren't concerned about health care – most of these people are Republicans anyway. What is surprising about middle-class and up-scale white people being opposed to health-care coverage for poor and uninsured. As long as "we" have it – who cares about those who don't have it? One more thing – most of the elected Republicans in the House and Senate don't like Obama so even if the Senate goes to them in 2014 – they still won't have the 67 votes needed to override any veto. Let 'em win and let Obama become the obstructionist they have been all along. I'd veto everything they passed – for the balance of my Administration. See how they like it! For the record – I am among the upper-middle class "white folk" retirees who just happens to believe it is a moral imperative that people have access to health coverage just like I've had all my life!

    November 26, 2013 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  4. Mia

    ROFLMAO. Yah, right.

    November 26, 2013 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  5. MennoKnight

    You are wrong. In the world's most successful democracies are examples of this. Canada, Germany and the Nordic Nations are a great example of this.
    Socialism works when it's goal is to look after the well being of the people in regards to health and well being. Health care is a great example of this.
    To pay for these you need a healthy economy. That is why you need policies that are capitalistic in nature to engage and empower successful businesses.
    Financial business fall somewhere in-between these two, and that is why they need regulation so greed does not run amuck.
    A great example of this can be seen after the financial melt down. All these countries had tighter regulations on banking, universal health care and are open for business with business friendly policies.

    Time for America to look past ideologies and look at what works.
    Ps in Canada the evangelical Christians were and still are at the forefront of universal health care as a social justice issue.

    November 26, 2013 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  6. NW-HardWood

    The relabeled Liberal to Progressive name change was a useful tool for the the elites to tell their lies to the useful idiots that naively believed "Hope and Change"! The idea that honest and transparent discussions with the American people can result in an legitimate Liberal/Progressive agenda is simply never going to happen. You had your best chance with the great divider....until the uncontrolled truth started to surface. Even with the MSM all couldn't convince enough people to ignore their lying eyes.....a single piece of paper to millions with the same message....obama lied to all it took. Any excuses you have and any future proclamations of purity are going to be met with anger...then laughter....then indifference. The Liberal/Progressive agenda has reached it's pinnacle under false pretense and can't be saved by even.....her.

    November 26, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  7. tateofpa

    They lie now they don't want to take responsibility for their lies to the American people. What till those with employers insurance coverage start getting the bad news of either, being set off to get their own on the exchanges or they will have to start spending money for their insurance that once was a benefit, but because the cost shot up, the employer ask them to cover some of the new cost.

    November 26, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  8. Barry " no good" Obama and the hypocrisy gang

    This is just the beginning death panels and the dropping of employer health plans are next.You can launch all the personal attacks you want at the opposition but the lies Obama and liberals told are coming home to roost.

    November 26, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  9. Country Above the Parties

    I see CNN now is FauxNews wana be. Don't lean right, coz you can never beat FauxNews. Dont lean left, MSNBC is already there. Stay where you are–middle of the road, report facts, not fantasy.

    November 26, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  10. Jim

    Many Liberals are thieves who steal other people's money by voting in "welfare" politicians who steal from the upper and middle class and buy votes with big handouts – i.e. the ACA. Naturally, the working class contributors dislike the thieves for taking their hard earned money and the liberal politicians have convinced their voters it's OK to steal other people's money. This liberal culture creates NO incentives for progress or growth. Clearly a thief has no incentive other than to keep stealing and the contributors struggle to produce when it becomes technically legal to steal from them. This is where it stops being America.

    November 26, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  11. GregSStewart

    30 million poor people will be able to get healthcare. 5 million policy owners were thrown off of healthcare, in the individual market, but that was only in the 26 states where there was not a separate exchange. 24 other states have not yet reported. That means that the number of policies that may have been cancelled is about 10 million, and these policies will generally protect a family. 30 million people may now find themselves without insurance. These would be people who were once able to afford healthcare, the middle class, and none of this includes the people who will lose their insurance next year.

    So are people upset that in fact we just removed insurance from the middle class in order to hand it to the poor? Yes, I can see that might change their minds a little.

    November 26, 2013 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  12. raul c.

    Current polls don't mean nothing to the majority of the Americans until the elections get here. The GOP in my poll shows they'lll be a disaster in the 2014 elections since the GOP are way off course in America. Thanks to Ted Cruz the clown and his ringmaster..

    November 26, 2013 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  13. Neuweiler

    The shift to the GOP will continue.

    Traditional Dem voting blocs tend to not show up to midterms, especially when their leaders are unpopular. The GOP and conservative base in general will be firing on all cylinders. Independents who are angry over Obamacare will storm to the polls. 2014 is sizing up to be another devastating year for Democrat arrogance. Since Obamacare's woes will only worsen, and since it personally effects voters directly, this sentiment shift to the GOP will only accelerate. Obamacare is flawed, and all the delays and "fixes" the Dems are trying to pull, in nothing more than pulling the wool over the voting public's eyes, to fool them yet again. I don't think it works in 2014.

    November 26, 2013 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  14. JJ

    GOP advantage!?!?! HA! YOU WISH! 🙂

    November 26, 2013 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  15. Martha in CF

    Stupid polls. I don't believe them at all....If the Redumblicans now have better poll numbers-Americans are really dumbing down!!!!!!!!!!!! Redumblicans don't care about the American people at all...

    November 26, 2013 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  16. longfisch

    Malory Archer


    A month ago, Political Ticker was filled with people laughing at the demise of the GOP shown to be true because of polls, and the doubters will told to go back to their Faux news if they could not handle the truth CNN was reporting.

    One month later polls do not matter, and CNN is run by the GOP.


    And in January 2014 the tides will turn again with the rethugs once again shutting down the government. Goood times, good times!


    And once again polls will matter and CNN is only printing the truth according to the same people who are on here today saying the exact opposite.

    November 26, 2013 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  17. Downriver

    That poll is a joke. 750 registered voters? Half of them Republicans? all it says is that republicans will vote Republican. Get real, CNN

    November 26, 2013 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  18. James V.

    Obumbles lies and gives freebies for votes. Truly amazing that 37% of useful idiot sycophants are still standing by him. Sad to say, we have a lot of idiots in this Country.

    November 26, 2013 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  19. Patrick Portland

    Considering what an incompetent pathological liar Bozo is, I'm astounded that the poll is that close. Shows you how the poor and uneducated breed like roaches and are a considerable part of the population. Very scary indeed...

    November 26, 2013 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  20. Sue

    I wouldn't vote for another Republican is their current state if Jesus came down and became one. Until they lose the crazy, will never vote for them again. Part of the reason why Obamacare has receive so much negatively is constant and relentless attack on it. The web site has failed Obamacare hasn't failed yet. Repugs have done absolutely nothing in the house except trying to repel Obamacare and trying to pass religious laws. I'm not the only one, everyone I work with my friends are all fed up with politics but especially of what has become of the Republican party.

    November 26, 2013 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  21. TONE

    Cnn i like this blog because of the people who post here, the knowledge they bring to this blog, people like Rudy, Malory, Data, Lynda Dominican Mama,think, and many others, all of their postings here are well researched, and based on facts something your reporters are not doing. the 2% difference in the polls is nothing so i am kind of wondering why did you report this?

    November 26, 2013 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  22. Old_Hippie

    Anyone in tech knows that any new system will have bugs. Nothing new there. However, any system manager worth his salt would be well aware of critical issues and would make the decision that the system was not ready to deploy and inform his bosses about what those issue are and what is being done to resolve them. The problem I see here is that there was a push to meet a hard deadline, even though the code was not user ready. That is the failure that needs to be addressed. Did this law have an artificial deadline? Probably. Excellent idea, bad execution.

    November 26, 2013 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    Pure BS.......if the majority is that stupid, might be time to leave the country before it's too late!

    November 26, 2013 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  24. sickofit

    But soon we will be fighting the budget battle again, so the winds will change.

    November 26, 2013 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  25. JJ

    Obama is the most radical, destructive and worst President in history. He is arrogant, a pot head, lazy (maybe works 10am to 4pm) incompetent, lawless, a fraud, never had a real job, aloof and a COMMUNIST. Obama and the Democrat party are continuing to destroy the great US economy. In almost five years they have; deficit spent $7.1 trillion (most of any Pres.) with nothing to show for it, increased national debt to $17.1 trillion and counting, real unemployment rate of 18%, no job growth, 8.5 million lost jobs, 90 million not working, black/hispanic unemployment over 20%, they hate oil/coal industries, fossil fuels, military, private sector, success, constitution, right to bear arms, over 2,260 soldiers killed in Iraq/Afgn since Obama became Pres., one in five people in poverty (highest ever), created disastrous Obamacare that has increased rates, cancelled insurance, lost doctors, is largest tax increase in history, destroy jobs and the economy and now costs $3 trillion, wasted billions of taxpayer funds on scam clean energy deals like Solyndra and Ener1 to campaign donors, foreign policy of cowardice and appeasement that has allowed at least two terrorist attacks, Benghazi and Boston, supports worst Ex Sec. of State in history, Hillary Clinton, who is responsible for the murder of Libyan ambassador and three staffers in Benghazi, supports worst AG in history Eric Holder, who is responsible for killing a border agent and the AP scandal, 48 million on food stamps and increased business killing govt regulation/employment more than any other Pres. Obama should be IMPEACHED.

    November 26, 2013 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
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