Whit Ayres, November 9

Whit Ayres’ comments to Reuters regarding Republican support and geography:

Whit Ayres, a Republican pollster based in Virginia, said the party was on a risky track. ”Republicans have traded fast-growing upscale suburban counties for slow-growing or declining rural areas. That is not a formula for long-term success.”

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Whit Ayres, November 9

Whit Ayres’ comments in the Los Angeles Times regarding the political environment:

“Our politics has become so tribal that people filter new information through a lens that tends to reinforce their preexisting point of view rather than change their point of view,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres.

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Whit Ayres, October 25

Whit Ayres’ comments in The Wall Street Journal regarding factions in the Republican party:

“Both Sens. Corker and Flake have played important roles in the governing-conservative part of the Republican Party,” said Whit Ayres, a longtime Republican pollster. “Losing them is a major problem for those of us who want a center-right coalition to function effectively.”

For now, Mr. Ayres said, the two camps in the party—the Trump forces and the party establishment—need each other and need to find a way to work together. “Neither faction,” he said, “is large enough either to win elections alone or to govern alone.”

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Jon McHenry, October 16

Jon McHenry’s comments in The Hill on the importance of White House leadership in the tax reform effort:

“You have to have a White House that’s engaged in the issue and is able to show with facts and figures that no, this is actually going to help the middle class,” said Jon McHenry, vice president at North Star Opinion Research, a Republican polling firm.

The middle-class messaging could also pressure vulnerable Democratic senators, such as Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), to back a GOP tax bill, McHenry said.

The White House needs to “make the case in a way that the Joe Manchins and Heidi Heitkamps of the world can support the plan,” he said.

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Whit Ayres, October 12

Whit Ayres’ comments in USA Today regarding President Trump and Senate Republican leaders:

Whit Ayres, a veteran Republican pollster, said he’s seen “nothing in my career that has approached this level of internecine warfare.”

“Everybody’s frustrated,” he said. “The president is frustrated. Senators and congressmen are frustrated. It seems to be very difficult to develop a majority coalition for much of anything so far.”

“Donald Trump has split the Republican party in two: the people who consider themselves more supporters of Donald Trump than of the Republican Party and the people who consider themselves more supporters of the Republican Party than of Donald Trump,” said Ayres, the Republican pollster.

“But neither wing of the party can win elections or govern without the other,” he said.

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Whit Ayres, October 11

Whit Ayres’ comments in The Hill on the role of the President in the legislative process:

But the fear among many in the GOP is that Trump’s eagerness to get into the fray ultimately hurts himself — and his party’s agenda.

“I’m sure there are a lot of people who could play their roles more effectively,” said Ayres. “But as Harry Truman said about the presidency: The buck stops here.”

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Dan Judy, September 28

Dan Judy’s comments in The Hill regarding presidential leadership in legislative battles:

“He came into office, really, as a Republican in name only. He has no consistent ideology, no real policy proposals — other than building a wall, which is obviously not going to happen,” said Dan Judy, a GOP strategist who worked on Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R-Fla.) 2016 presidential campaign.

“As hard as Republicans in Congress tried, health care was not particularly popular and there was no kind of presidential leadership,” Judy added. “If Trump can’t get off Twitter and stop acting like a little boy, the same fate might befall tax reform.”

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Whit Ayres, September 27

Whit Ayres’ comments in The Washington Post regarding Donald Trump’s effect on Republican primaries:

Moore is now 70 years old and was twice suspended as the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court for refusing to obey laws he saw as at odds with his religious beliefs. Normally all this would be career-ending. But that was before the Age of Trump. “What Donald Trump has done,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres, “is embolden the Roy Moores of the world.”

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Whit Ayres, September 27

Whit Ayres’ comments in McClatchy Newspapers (featured here in The Sacramento Bee) regarding the Alabama Senate primary:

“It helps to remember that Alabama is its own brand in many ways, and what happens in Alabama may not tell us a lot about what happens in a closer swing state, like Arizona or Nevada,” said veteran GOP pollster Whit Ayres. “An Alabama primary is not necessarily the same as an Arizona or Nevada Republican primary. Those three states have very different demographics, very different political dynamics. We all want to make open-and-shut cases from one contest, and you just can’t do that.”

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Whit Ayres, September 27

Whit Ayres’ comments to the Associated Press regarding the Alabama primary runoff results:

Republican pollster Whit Ayres, who has worked for Senate campaigns across the country, said Trump learns the same lesson his predecessor, Barack Obama, learned watching Democrats lose control of Congress and then seeing Trump defeat his chosen successor, Hillary Clinton. “You can’t just transfer the popularity of your brand to another candidate,” Ayres said.

As for Strange, Ayres noted the freshman senator was facing voters for the first time since being appointed by a governor who eventually resigned in disgrace. “No other Republican Senate incumbent will carry that baggage,” Ayres said.

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