News & Politics

‘Saturday Night Live’ Got It Right: New Gallup Poll Finds High Anxiety Among Democrats on Election Day

There's a lot at stake.

Photo Credit: Saturday Night Live

NBC’s long-running “Saturday Night Live” has never been shy about making fun of Democrats along with Republicans. A hilarious “SNL” skit that aired on November 3 depicted Democratic voters as being in a state of maximum anxiety over the 2018 midterms no matter how much they tried to pretend they were feeling optimistic—and according to a new Gallup survey, that skit isn’t off base. Gallup, on Election Day, reported that 81% of voters it described as either Democrats or “Democratic leaners” are “very or somewhat worried” about what will happen in the U.S. if Republicans maintain their majority in either the House of Representatives or the Senate. And only 19% of them are “not too or not at all worried” about the results of that possibility.

However, Gallup finds that Republicans and “Republican leaners,” in contrast, are less worried about what will happen in the U.S. if Democrats obtain a majority in either house of Congress. According to Gallup, 66% of Republicans or “Republican leaners” are “very or somewhat worried” about what would happen with a Democratic majority in the House or Senate—while 34% are “not too or not at all worried.”

Gallup also found that Democrats are less optimistic than Republicans when it comes to their chances of having a majority in the House in 2019.

Of the Republicans surveyed, 87% predicted that the GOP would maintain its House majority on Election Day, while only 74% of Democrats believed that their party would retake the House. And Democrats were even less optimistic about the Senate.

Gallup found that 83% of Republicans predicted that the GOP would keep its Senate majority on Election Day, while only 49% of Democrats believed their party would obtain a majority in the Upper House.

In order to achieve a Senate majority this year, Democrats would need to maintain every seat they presently hold while capturing two Republican-held seats. If Democrats could capture the Republican-held seats in Arizona and Nevada and not lose any seats, they would obtain a narrow Senate majority. But those races, according to many polls, are close—and Democratic incumbent Sen. Heidi Heitkamp has been trailing Republican Kevin Cramer in North Dakota’s Senate race.

The morning of Election Day, pollster Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight.com found that Democrats had an 87% chance of retaking the House but only a 19% chance of retaking the Senate. All 435 House seats are up for grabs today. 

Watch the SNL skit below:

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Alex Henderson is a news writer at AlterNet and veteran political journalist. His work has also appeared in Salon, Raw Story, Truthdig, National Memo, Philadelphia Weekly, Democratic Underground, L.A. Weekly, MintPress News and many other publications. Follow him on Twitter @alexvhenderson.