New Poll Shows GOP May Have Work to Do in Key Swing States in 2024

AP Photo/Charles Krupa

As the 2024 presidential election cycle heats up, there will be plenty of polls asking Americans about candidates and issues. If Republicans are going to come out on top in 2024, voters in swing states may be the key to that victory. A new NBC News poll shows that on issues like the U.S. southern border, there is much consensus, but on some social issues like abortion and LGBTQ, Republicans may have to get out and do some old-fashioned campaigning. The poll took a look at all registered voters and Republican primary voters, and asked them about 11 different issues and proposals that many of the GOP presidential candidates have been campaigning on. It gives a solid picture of what a large portion of Americans are concerned about and who they would support.


The ongoing disaster at the southern border seems to be front and center in both the all-voter and GOP primary voter groups. Deploying the U.S. military to the border in order to stop the flow of illegal drugs is a popular solution for those polled. Of those polled, 55 percent of all voters and 86 percent of GOP primary voters said they would be more likely to support any candidate that supported military at the border. Putting the military on the border and candidates that would support it received by far the most response. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently laid out his plan to deal with the southern border. That plan included using deadly force against drug cartels to halt drug smuggling.

The least popular issue with both groups of voters is also one that Democrats and the left seem to campaign on the most, and that is any cuts to Social Security and Medicare as a means to lessen the federal deficit. As a Congressman, DeSantis did support raising the retirement age to 70 and privatizing Social Security benefits, a bit surprising for someone who represented a state with a large senior citizen population. But as a presidential candidate, he has vowed not to touch Social Security or Medicare. Only 12 percent of all voters and 19 percent of GOP primary voters said they would support candidates who wanted to change those entitlements.


Also not a popular position, and one that DeSantis may do himself a favor by putting an end to in the case of Disney, is “threatening to penalize or financially harm businesses that make statements on LGBTQ and other issues that they do not agree with.” Of those polled on that issue, 12 percent said they would be more likely to support such a candidate; 70 percent said they would be less likely. That may be an indication that, as in the case of Bud Light, those opposed to Disney’s position on LGBTQ issues would make their views known with their pocketbook.

Ongoing financial support of the war in Ukraine is also not a popular one with all voters and GOP primary voters. Of all voters polled, 40 percent said they would be less likely to support a candidate who supports ongoing U.S. taxpayer support for the conflict, while 52 percent of GOP voters said they would be less likely to support those candidates.

Republicans may want to consider focusing on social issues with voters in 2024. Of GOP primary voters, 76 percent said they would likely support a candidate who is against K-8 discussing things like sexual orientation and gender identity in class and would ban transgender teens from receiving puberty-blockers. Of all voters, those numbers were 46 percent and 41 percent, respectively.


The most interesting results came on the subject of abortion. Of GOP primary voters, just 52 percent said they would support a candidate that was for a six-week ban on abortion. A six-week ban did not resonate with general election voters, especially those in those key swing states that would be vital for a Republican victory. Just 31 percent of those swing state voters would likely support someone who was for a six-week abortion ban, while 55 percent would not likely support a candidate who favored a six-week ban. DeSantis recently signed such a bill into law in Florida, and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott has voiced support for a 15-week ban federally but would be open to more stringent legislation.

But aside from these obvious issues plaguing the nation, results from an earlier poll taken this year may also be where Republicans want to place their focus in 2024. In January of this year, a Gallup poll showed that Americans thought the biggest issue facing the nation was government itself — and the poor leadership in government. It could be a telltale sign that, while voters are concerned with individual issues, they want solutions to those issues. It is in those swing states where Republican candidates can address the problems that polls say voters care about, but also give those voters real solutions to those problems. It might just work.




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