Democratic strategists argued that the 2022 midterm elections had radically changed in the immediate wake of the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade.
They said that the election would now be a referendum on abortion rights and the Republicans seeking to restrict women’s choices rather than an election about the economy, centered on rising gas costs and inflation. Democrats followed through on their promises.
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According to a CNN review of impact data, Democratic campaigns and groups spent $214 million in only the month of October on broadcast TV ads that addressed abortion. That accounted for almost half (45%) of the party’s total advertising expenditures during that time.
It also outspent advertising on other subjects. The crime was the Democrats’ second-most important subject, receiving $79 million from them, or less than 17% of their total ad spending for the month.
It seems that gamble may have been a huge error with only six days left in the election.
According to a recent CNN national poll, 51% of prospective voters said the economy had the biggest role in determining how they would vote for Congress. Only 15% of respondents identified abortion as the most significant issue, placing it in second place.
State supreme courts are at the forefront of the fight for abortion rights — and the judges on these courts are often elected by the people.
Abortion rights are on the ballot this election, and we will vote like it. https://t.co/ZB85y65fmz
— ACLU (@ACLU) November 3, 2022
That is consistent with a large number of previous polls, which show that the economy is by far the top concern for voters.
This should worry Democrats, who in October spent less than $68 million on advertisements that discussed taxes and less than $18 million on advertisements that discussed inflation. Contrarily, during the same time period, Republicans spent roughly $144 million on advertisements addressing taxes, the party’s top priority, and nearly $77 million on advertisements noting inflation.
It’s time to vote! ⏰@VoteChoice has released their pro reproductive rights candidate recommendations for the November 8th elections in an official Voter Guide along with more than 150 other progressive orgs!
Build your ballot and get to the polls: https://t.co/bBA0RBOoWN
— Planned Parenthood Action (@PPact) November 3, 2022
The White House of President Joe Biden is attempting to change its narrative to focus on the economy. Lowering expenses for the American people is @POTUS’ #1 objective, the official White House account tweeted on Wednesday afternoon. He is opposing Big Pharma by capping the price of prescription drugs for seniors at the pharmacy and decreasing health insurance premiums for individuals under the Affordable Care Act.
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All of the aforementioned does not negate the fact that abortion is a crucial electoral issue, particularly for the Democratic Party’s base. In the CNN poll, 29% of prospective Democratic voters cited abortion as their top concern, while 27% selected the state of the economy.
The choice to focus so much ad expenditure on abortion may appear to be money well spent if Democratic base turnout soars. But given that voters prioritise the economy above other issues, it’s possible that Democrats misjudged the importance of abortion in terms of swaying electable voters.
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