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Poll: Democrats’ Anti-Corruption Message Gaining Traction ahead of Midterms

People protest before EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 Environmental Protection Agency budget in Washington, D.C., April 26, 2018. Pruitt resigned from office in July. (Brian Snyder/Reuters)

Democrats’ charges that Republican leaders in Washington, D.C. are corrupt may be having an effect in some GOP districts, according to new polling.

60 percent of independent voters and 54 percent of all voters in 48 GOP-held districts said they believe Republicans to be “more corrupt” than Democrats, according to a new survey by the progressive Center for American Progress Action Fund. Only 46 percent of voters in those districts said Democrats are the more corrupt party.

Leading up to the 2018 midterm elections, Democrats have dusted off the “culture of corruption” messaging that helped them win back the House and Senate in 2006, when the Republican Congress was weighed down by a number of high-profile ethics and corruption scandals.

“The swamp has never been more foul or more fetid than under this president,” Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer said in late May, referring to President Trump’s oft-repeated promise to “Drain the Swamp” in the nation’s capital of corruption. “Instead of delivering on his promise to drain the swamp, President Trump has become the swamp,” House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi added.

Several Trump cabinet members have found themselves mired in ethics scandals, including Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt, who resigned earlier this month amid controversy over his travel practices, email use, and spending.

Former secretary of health and human services Tom Price also resigned after it was discovered he took charter flights at taxpayer expense.

Over half of Republicans, 56 percent, said Congress is not checking the Trump administration enough, and 57 percent of independents agree.

Democrats have an advantage on the generic ballot so far, leading by over eight points according to the latest polling data.

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