A post-Election Day poll that surveyed respondents who described themselves as Republicans and conservatives found that the top GOP leadership is more to blame than President Donald Trump for the party’s underwhelming performance in this year’s midterm elections.
Although most experts believed the elections would produce a significant “red wave,” as things turned out Republicans won a narrow majority in the House and did not retake control of the Senate.
Republican voters are MUCH more likely to blame Republican Leadership than Donald Trump for November's disappointing results.https://t.co/zXsC9R117J@LeaderMcConnell@GOPLeader@GOPChairwoman@realdonaldtrump
— Rasmussen Reports (@Rasmussen_Poll) November 21, 2022
The poll was conducted by Rasmussen and was sponsored by The National Pulse. It asked respondents to compare President Trump with GOP national chair Ronna McDaniel, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in sorting out the reasons why things went the way they did.
The GOP establishment leaders have worked to deflect any responsibility for the election results by targeting Trump, especially as he has recently announced his 2024 candidacy for another term in the White House.
Many huge Republican Party donors have also made a public display of turning on President Trump in recent weeks, almost universally throwing their support toward Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
However, mainstream Republican voters appear not to be interested in the party’s establishment spin. The poll asked: “Republicans did not do as well in this year’s elections as many had expected. Who is most to blame for this, the individual candidates, the Republican Party leadership, Donald Trump? Or is it nobody’s fault?”
The responses show that only 16% of likely conservative voters blamed individual candidates, and 20% blamed President Trump for the less-than-expected midterm outcome.
Meanwhile, 43% of conservative voters said that the GOP party leaders are most at fault for the election results.
“Nobody’s fault” was picked by 17% of respondents and 5% said they were unsure.
In addition to several of the party’s mega-donors, establishment publications like National Review are falling in line with the anti-Trump explanation. The poll tabulated results from self-identifying liberal voters separately, and their answers line up more closely with the Republican establishment and the traditional media outlets.
Of the liberal respondents, 46% said the election outcome was Trump’s fault, while 29% said it was the GOP leadership, and 15% said it was the responsibility of individual candidates.
The GOP establishment is desperately attempting to hold its narrative together long enough to get past the leadership elections in Congress when lawmakers are sworn in on January 3.