Is it possible that white evangelicals swung the Alabama election against Roy Moore?

The network exit poll finds 80 percent of white evangelical or born-again Christians supported Roy Moore, 10 points lower than the share of this group that backed Mitt Romney in 2012. The shift is statistically significant and would have been enough to overcome Jones’s 1.5 percentage-point victory margin. CONT.

Scott Clement, Washington Post

Americans Overwhelmingly Support ‘Zero Tolerance’ On Sexual Harassment

Nearly 9 in 10 Americans believe that “a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment is essential to bringing about change in our society.”

At a time when partisan opinions are so polarized on a range of issues, Republicans and Democrats are relatively similar in believing that society should crack down hard on sexual harassment, a new poll from Ipsos and NPR suggests. CONT.

Danielle Kurtzleben, NPR

Placing Priority: How Issues Mattered More than Demographics in the 2016 Election

Key Findings
Viewing the electorate through the lens of issue priorities rather than through demographic variables yields valuable insights. Our analysis suggests that the mix of issue priorities revealed more about voter decision-making than demography. …

The key issues driving the election, based on what voters found most important, were the economy, health care, jobs, and Social Security. Issues such as climate change, gender, and racial injustice that made up a significant level of the media coverage of the 2016 election were not among the most important issues for most voters. The Rust Belt was key to the election outcome, and the economy was the top issue among Trump voters in that region, and the fifth most important issue among Clinton voters.

Of the four top issues, Trump had the advantage among voters who highly prioritized jobs and the economy while Clinton had an advantage among those who prioritized health care. Neither candidate had an advantage on Social Security. CONT.

David Winston, Voter Study Group

Democrats Draw Vivid Lesson From Alabama: Mobilize Black Voters

Amid the Democrats’ celebration over their success in turning out a huge number of black voters in the Senate election in Alabama, party leaders, activists and operatives are seeing a vivid message to increase outreach, mobilization and investment in minority communities. …

About 30 percent of the electorate in the Alabama Senate race was black, according to CNN exit polls, making the black share of the vote in that election higher than it was in both of Barack Obama’s presidential victories. Mr. Jones won 98 percent of the votes among black women and 93 percent among black men.

“I think the writing is on the wall about what the path forward is for progressive politics in this country, and the path forward is through communities of color and women,” said Adrianne Shropshire, the executive director of BlackPAC, which engages black communities politically. CONT.

John Eligon, New York Times

Americans Assess the Progress of the Russia Investigation

Fewer than half of Americans believe President Trump has done something illegal when it comes to his ties with Russia, but more than 6 in 10 say he has tried to impede or obstruct the investigation into these ties, according to a new survey by The AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The survey also finds that confidence in the Justice Department’s investigation has increased among Democrats and decreased among Republicans since June. CONT.

AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research

The Kubler Ross Politics of 2017

In just one year, we’ve seen a remarkable shift in political fortunes for the party in power. They have lost high profile races in a light blue state (Virginia) and a dark red one (Alabama). They have failed, thus far, to pass any meaningful legislation, despite having total control of both Houses of Congress. The one bill they are likely to pass before the end of the year is garnering just 25 to 30 percent support among the electorate. Fewer Americans identify as Republican today than they did back in 2016. And, of course, President Trump’s approval ratings are mired in the mid-to-low 30’s — driven almost entirely by self-inflicted wounds, not outside events. CONT.

Amy Walter, Cook Political Report

Once Unthinkable, Senate Looks Like a Tossup in 2018

At this time last year, the Democratic path to Senate control seemed impossible: Hold all of the Democratic seats, flip Arizona and Nevada, then hope for a miracle.

The Democrats got the political version of a miracle on Tuesday. Doug Jones’s victory in Alabama means Democrats have accomplished the most difficult item on their checklist in pursuit of the Senate. A Democratic path is now obvious, and the race for control is basically a tossup, perhaps with a Republican advantage. CONT.

Nate Cohn, New York Times

Government Gets Lower Ratings for Handling Health Care, Environment, Disaster Response

Since 2015, opinions about the federal government’s handling of several major issues have become less positive and much more partisan. Yet majorities continue to say the government should have a “major role” on such issues as defending against terrorism and helping lift people from poverty. And views about government’s role, unlike its performance, have changed only modestly over the past two years. CONT.

Pew

CBS News/YouGov poll: Safe or scary, free or dangerous?

On the anniversary of the Sandy Hook mass shooting, divisions over guns in America run deeper than policy differences.

To most gun owners, guns are “part of what makes America great” (53 percent). They also say guns make America “free” (61 percent) “strong” (55 percent) and safe (59 percent).

For many non-gun owners, guns make America “dangerous” (55 percent) and “scary” (38 percent) and represent “one of the country’s biggest problems.” CONT.

CBS News

The Politics of #HimToo

The issue of sexual misconduct has emerged as a centerpiece of Democratic strategy for taking on President Trump and the Republican Party. That strategy paid off on Tuesday with the defeat of Roy Moore.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s decision to bring to center stage charges of sexual harassment leveled by more than a dozen women against Trump has forced the White House onto the defensive. …

For Democrats, who have struggled to find traction in their battles with the administration, the explosion of allegations has created an opening to put the focus on Trump — a development greatly enhanced by the Moore debacle. CONT.

Thomas B. Edsall, New York Times