Voter confidence rises in 2022 – but deep partisan divisions remain

That growth is coming almost entirely from Republicans, though there remains a dramatic partisan divide. Democrats’ confidence in the national tally was virtually unchanged – 93% in 2020 to 92% in 2022. Republicans rose 20 points – to 42% – in 2022, still short of a majority.

“Recent trends in voter confidence, particularly at the state and national levels, are the product of the polarization of attitudes toward the electoral process along partisan lines,” the report said, noting that Democrats and Republicans gave “similar answers” to this question in 2016.

A large majority of Democrats have expressed confidence in the vote every time this question has been asked since 2012. Even the lowest measure among Democrats, after the 2016 presidential election, has consistently found a majority – 69% – expressed his confidence that his votes were counted.

By contrast, a majority of Republicans said as much only in 2014 and 2016, the two elections in which their party fared well.

The more localized the election, the more voters expressed their confidence. Overall, 85% of people said they were confident the votes in their state were being counted as expected, 89% said the same about their city or county.

More broadly, the survey found that Americans were broadly satisfied with their individual midterm voting experiences in 2022. The survey found that 93% said they were confident their vote had been counted as expected. .

Of those who voted by mail, a predominantly Democratic group, 98% found it very or somewhat easy “to follow all the instructions necessary to vote and send it back to be counted”.

For in-person voters, 97% said things went either “very well” or “agreed” at the polling station where they voted, and the average wait time for a voter on Election Day was six minutes, and four minutes for an early in-person voter.

The survey also asked voters about a list of electoral policies. With a few exceptions — such as requiring electronic voting machines to have paper back-ups, a widely accepted practice, and backing nonpartisan election officials — there are significant partisan divisions.

A majority of Democrats and Republicans support requiring photo ID to vote, for example. But there is still a 30-point gap between Democrats and Republicans, with nearly universal support among Republicans. A majority of respondents overall — and a majority of Democrats — support automatic voter registration and allow voter registration on Election Day, but a majority of Republicans do not.

And while nearly 60% of Republicans support requiring manual counting of paper ballots — which election officials say is expensive, slow and less accurate — most Democrats do not.

MIT has conducted its study – the US Election Performance Survey – for every presidential election since 2008, as well as for the midterms of 2014 and 2022. This year’s survey, administered by YouGov, interviewed 10 200 registered voters, including 200 in each state and the District of Columbia.


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