by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
With all due respect to Reince Preibus, is there anyone in the country doing more to elect Republicans than Barack Obama?
Before Obama, the GOP was a party that could not find its posterior with both hands. After the 2008 presidential election, only 34 percent of the American people had a favorable view of the Republican Party, Gallup found, while 61 percent viewed the party of Lincoln and Reagan unfavorably.
The GOP’s numbers haven’t really gotten any better. So why are Republicans heavy favorites to retain the House majority while making gains — and perhaps even taking control — in the Senate? Thank Obama.
Three in ten voters say they will cast their ballots in November to oppose Obama. That’s the same percentage as before the 2010 elections, when Republicans won the House and made gains elsewhere. It’s also about the same as the share of voters who wanted to send George W. Bush a message before the Democrats captured Congress in 2006.
One reason for this is the health care law that bears the president’s name. Obamacare has given some Americans health insurance, though by most accounts the majority of its enrollees weren’t previously uninsured. It has made others lose their preferred health insurance, deal with narrower networks of doctors and pay higher premiums.