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There are currently over 880,000 registered COVID deaths in the US, and every day another 2-3000 more are added to the tally, so it is very likely that by November, there will be over 1 million COVID deaths. Overwhelmingly, these deaths are the unvaccinated: around 9 in every 10 deaths are unvaccinated. On top of that, whether US citizens get vaccinated is heavily impacted by their political affiliation: whereas 90% of Democrats are vaccinated, fewer than 60% of Republicans are, and nearly all of the remaining unvaccinated Republicans don't plan on getting vaccinated at all. This means that a large amount of COVID fatalities will be Republicans, even accounting for the initial periods where vaccines were not widely available yet.

Considering how close certain senate races have historically been, how likely could it be that in some of the races won by Democrats, the difference in vote count is lower than the number of Republican deaths in that seat's area, meaning that the lack of desire of Republicans to get vaccinated has had a material impact on the results?

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  • no, not even close. very few races are even close, so a 0.25% dip (mostly in red districts to boot) would not make a significant difference.
    – dandavis
    Commented Feb 1, 2022 at 16:54
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    When there's a failure to have an effective response against a disaster, it becomes easier for any challenger to claim that the incumbents are incompetent. As always, self-identified "independents" are the group to watch for US national politics. Biden's polling is not too hot at the moment. Generic ballot polls are a dead heat.
    – Pete W
    Commented Feb 1, 2022 at 17:02
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    It's an interesting question, but has many variables. Deaths are very age-dependent which also correlates to Dem/Rep affiliation. Large cities have seen exodus to smaller cities, helped by remote work acceptance. Will that dilute rural specificities (voting Rep) or harden them? States may see some extra level of "sorting": Dems in Rep states leaving for "safer" states, Reps in Dem states leaving for "freeer" states. Federally, House seat numbers may be affected, but that's far away in the 2030 census. Etc... Be hard to tell, but it surely is a space to watch. Commented Feb 1, 2022 at 17:21
  • Be careful to separate out the unvaccinated deaths from before vaccines were widely available (presumably affecting the parties more equally) compared to after. Commented Feb 1, 2022 at 17:42
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    Anybody's guess. I don't know that it can be meaningfully predicted.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Feb 1, 2022 at 21:38

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