New Poll by Saint Anselm College Survey Center Shows Republican lead on the generic ballot continues to narrow slightly

August 15, 2022

By Ann Camann

A new poll conducted by the Saint Anselm College Survey Center (SACSC) at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics (NHIOP) finds Republicans holding a 3-point lead at 46%-43%, down from a generic 6-point advantage in January and a 4-point lead in March. The political environment has remained poor but stable for incumbent officeholders. 68% of New Hampshire registered voters still believe the country is on the wrong track, unchanged since our March poll.  

The poll also found incumbent job approval has somewhat receded since our March poll. President Joe Biden’s job approval has decreased slightly to 42%-57% from 43%-57%. Governor Chris Sununu is now at 60%-37%, down from 62%-36%. Senator Jeanne Shaheen is now at 47%-46%, down from 48%-47%; Senator Maggie Hassan is at 44%-51%, down from 46%-49%; Congressman Chris Pappas is at 42%-45%, down from 43%-42%; and Congresswoman Annie Kuster is at 40%-45%, down from 42%-45%.  Only 39% of voters believe that Hassan deserves re-election. 38% of CD-1 voters believe that Pappas deserves re-election, unchanged since March, while 36% of CD-2 voters believe that Kuster deserves re-election, up 3 points since March.

New Hampshire Institute of Politics Executive Director Neil Levesque stated, “Voter concerns favor Republican candidates, with Economy/Inflation as the most important issue for 28% of voters, followed by Government Spending/Taxes at 13%. Abortion is the most important issue for 12%, while Climate/Environment comes in at 9%. However, the recent Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade has energized pro-choice voters, with the net result that even as incumbent job approval has declined slightly, the generic ballot for Democrats has improved slightly. 58% of pro-choice voters report being more motivated to vote in the wake of the Dobbs decision, while it makes no difference to 69% of pro-life voters.”

Levesque continued, “The Republican primaries for United States Senate and the 1st Congressional District have begun to take shape, while the race for the 2nd Congressional District is still largely undefined. No matter the nominees, weakness in the Federal delegation creates potential for competitive races.”

Full Results (PDF)

Results are from the Saint Anselm College Survey Center poll based on online surveys of 1898 New Hampshire registered voters. Surveys were collected between August 9 and 11, 2022 from cell phone users randomly drawn from a sample of registered voters reflecting the demographic and partisan characteristics of the voting population. Names were presented in random order for the job approval and the ballot test series.

The survey has an overall margin of sampling error of +/- 2.3% with a confidence interval of 95%; the margin of sampling error for questions specific to congressional districts are 3.2%; the margin of sampling error for questions posed only to voters identifying as Republican is +/- 3.4% statewide, +/- 4.8% in the 1st Congressional District, and +/- 4.9% in the 2nd Congressional District. The data are weighted for age, gender, geography, and education based on a voter demographic model derived from historical voting patterns, but are not weighted by party registration or party identification.

Founded in 2001, the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College provides a nonpartisan forum for discussion and debate. It seeks to develop programming, and to foster scholarship and dialogue, encompassing a diverse range of political topics, opinions and issues. The Institute serves as a resource for students, scholars, politicians, and the general public.