U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh undergoing a highly divisive confirmation process shocked Republican voters out of their slumber heading into the midterms, a Democratic pollster said Wednesday.
“There’s no question that Kavanaugh hearings woke up Republicans who really, you know, not so sure about Donald Trump, not so sure about whether how important it is for them to go out and support Republicans in Congress, who they really don’t like,” Democratic pollster Mark Mellman said in an interview with The Hill. “I mean, Republicans don’t feel very favorably about their own congressional leadership.”
Mellman is a leading public opinion researcher and communication strategist. He currently serves as the president of the American Association of Political Consultants and the polling and consulting firm The Mellman Group, whose clients have included Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and House Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.).
Kavanaugh’s record and character were relentlessly scrutinized and attacked after President Donald Trump nominated him July 9. Three women publicly accused Kavanaugh at the 11th hour of the confirmation process of sexually assaulting them during high school and college freshman parties.
Kavanaugh strenuously denied the allegations and none of the witnesses the women said would verify their claims did so.
“But the election is still a month off and the reality is Kavanaugh is seated as a justice of the Supreme Court, the issue is over. So are they going to go back to their previous lethargy or are they going to continue to be excited? We have no idea,” Mehlman said.
Mehlman is not alone in finding a GOP surge. Rasmussen Reports found in a survey released Wednesday that 62 percent of Republicans are more likely to vote because of the bitter Kavanaugh confirmation process, compared to 54 percent of Democrats.
Rasmussen also said Wednesday that voters are now evenly split between Democrats and Republicans on the generic ballot for the November 6 voting, with each party drawing 45 percent support.
Democrats have led the generic ballot, which measures which party’s candidates a voter plans to support, all of 2018, often by double digits. As a result, mainstream media outlets and liberal political pundits have for most of the year projected a “Blue Wave” in November that would restore a Democratic majority in the House.
In another indication of greatly …