The enthusiasm gap has been closing in the final days leading up to the election. One of the questions we are testing asks voters if they feel more or less enthusiastic about voting compared to past elections.

HaystaqDNA has been conducting daily surveys in 35 states over the past two weeks.  This is part of a long-term research project to determine what survey questions are the best predictors of who will actually vote.  While we will have to wait awhile after the election to find out who actually voted, there are some interesting insights from the surveys thus far.

One of the questions we are testing asks voters if they feel more or less enthusiastic about voting compared to past elections.   Overall, 60% of the voters surveyed said that they felt more enthusiastic about this election than they did in past elections.  As one might expect, those who have strong opinions one way or another report being more enthusiastic about the election.  Conservatives and Republicans have lead Democrats and liberals in terms of enthusiasm, but the gap seems to have tightened as we got closer to Election Day.

Republicans have consistently held a lead in enthusiasm.  Democrats and independents were roughly tied two weeks ago, but, as we got closer to the election, Democratic enthusiasm increased while the independents remained steady.

A similar trend is apparent when we look at self-described ideology.  As of October 20th, conservatives were more enthusiastic than either liberals or moderates.  Since then, liberal enthusiasm has increased while moderates have remained fairly steady.  People who support the Tea Party have shown a consistent lead in enthusiasm compared to those who are neutral or unfavorable toward the Tea Party.

In an election that has been described as a referendum on President Obama, enthusiasm is highest among those who disapprove of the President, followed closely by those who approve.  People who are undecided about the President are much less enthusiastic.  When we asked if voters viewed the election as being about the individual candidates or about sending a message about President Obama, those opposing Obama have had a consistent lead in enthusiasm up until Saturday, when their enthusiasm dropped, and the enthusiasm of people supporting the President or voting for specific candidates ticked up.

Details can be seen at