By Eli Yokley
November 22, 2022 at 5:00 am ET
Attacks on the integrity of the 2022 midterm election results by influential Republicans have been relatively few and far between, with nearly all GOP candidates who lost high-profile contests conceding in a straightforward manner. In turn, new Morning Consult trend research shows no dramatic decline in election trust on the right.
To be clear, the majority of Republicans (56%) have little or no trust in the electoral system, a vexing problem for a representative democracy.
But the fact that the figure has not plunged after the GOP underperformed expectations could be seen as a positive sign. Only one of the cycle’s high-profile losing candidates — Kari Lake, the Trump-backed Republican who lost a competitive race to be governor of Arizona — is claiming that foul play is responsible for their defeat.
Nationwide, a plurality of Republican voters (47%) said they believe the midterm elections were “free and fair,” down slightly from 52% the previous week when GOP confidence in the integrity of this year’s contests reached an all-time high. But that 47% is nonetheless higher than the 42% who said at the start of this month that they expected the Nov. 8 contests to be free and fair.
Looking ahead to 2024, the Republican electorate appears less optimistic that the presidential contest will be legitimate. A 46% plurality of GOP voters said they do not expect the next presidential election to be “free and fair,” similar to expectations throughout much of 2022 about the midterm contests.
The latest surveys were conducted Nov. 17-19 and Nov. 18-21, 2022, among representative samples of 2,210 U.S. adults and 1,994 registered voters, respectively, with margins of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.