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2018 midterm elections, exit poll: GOP, Trump tax law political flop



Donald Trump Paul Ryan
Donald Trump and Paul

AP Photo/Alex

  • Republicans counted on their tax cut law being a key part of
    their 2018 midterm strategy.
  • But a new exit poll showed that few Americans believed the
    tax law helped them.
  • Only 28% surveyed said the Republican tax cuts benefitted
    them, while 45% said they had no effect. 

Republicans wanted to make their tax cuts the centerpiece of
their 2018 midterm strategy, but it doesn’t look like it worked.

According to an
exit poll conducted
by CNN, NBC, ABC, and other major news
outlets, few midterm voters believed that the GOP tax
 benefited them:

  • 28% of people surveyed said the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has
    helped them.
  • 45% reported no impact.
  • And 23% of people said the TCJA has hurt them.

In the run up to the passage of the TCJA, Republicans were
convinced that the bill would be a political winner. But
over the course of 2018
, polls routinely showed that
the tax reform was unpopular.
GOP candidates
and groups pared back their advertising around
the law.

An internal GOP poll
obtained by Bloomberg
showed that the party had admitted that
Republicans lost messaging battle over the TCJA.

While most Americans will receive a tax cut from the law, not
many people have filed taxes under the new system which could
have blunted the impact. At the same time, the GOP’s promises of
boom in business investment
and wages has not materialized.

On the other side, Democrats were able to convince voters that
most of the tax laws benefits will
go to wealthier
Americans and corporations.
The internal GOP poll
found that 61% of Americans believed
that corporations and the wealthy got more of the benefit than
the middle class. Also, the TCJA’s massive
addition to the federal deficit
 became a major talking
point for Democrats.

Weeks before Election Day, President Donald Trump even announced
that a new tax cut for middle class Americans is on the way — a
move that took GOP leaders by surprise. Many analysts said that
amounted to an
implicit admission that the TCJA
was not the political winner
that the GOP expected.

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