(CNN)The House GOP’s move to remove Rep. Liz Cheney from her leadership position is widely seen as the latest move to placate the base at the risk of alienating the center of the electorate. Cheney had voted to impeach former President Donald Trump and has continued her critiques of him while most other Republicans seem to have a hard time distancing themselves from him.
But a look at the statistics reveals that Republicans may be playing it right when it comes to Trump.
The belief that Republicans should not try to placate Trump or his supporters comes down to the fact that he is unpopular and just lost a presidential election.
That said, there’s little sign that Trump is even on the minds’ of most voters these days. He’s not on Twitter, and Google searches for him are way down. Indeed, there’s not much of a sign that the GOP’s association with Trump is hurting them at this point.
Take a look at the generic congressional ballot. Democrats hold a slight lead of about 3 to 4 points in an average of polls. Trump lost the 2020 election by 4.5 points, and House Republicans lost nationally by 3.1 points.
In other words, Republicans are in no worse position than they were in the 2020 election. In fact, they’re actually polling better now on the generic ballot than they were heading into the last election by about 3 to 4 points because polling across the board underestimated Republicans.
If Republicans were underperforming their baseline, you’d expect them to be doing worse than what President Joe Biden’s approval ratings would suggest. Biden’s net approval rating (approval – disapproval) among voters is just north of +10 points, which is actually more tha
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