Home National Politics Gallup: Democrats Take 6-Point Lead on “Generic” Congressional Ballot

Gallup: Democrats Take 6-Point Lead on “Generic” Congressional Ballot


Oh noes, what a disaster for the Democrats coming this November! Oh wait, what’s that the most respected pollster in America says? Hmmmm.

But just a second, you say, what about the huge “enthusiasm gap” favoring Republicans?  Yeah, well, you might want to read this first, before you panic prematurely (or celebrate, if you’re a Republican).

Among voters who are ‘very excited’ about voting this fall Republicans hold a 52-40 advantage. How much that matters is up for debate though. Scott Brown led the Massachusetts Senate race 59-40 with ‘very excited’ voters but won by only 5. Chris Christie led the New Jersey Governor’s race 60-34 with ‘very excited’ voters but his final margin of victory was only 4 points. As I’ve said before unexcited voters count the same as excited ones and our polling so far this cycle has suggested the Democrats who answer our surveys vote, whether they’re excited about it or not. So I’m not sure how much the wide GOP advantage with ‘very excited’ voters really matters.

I mean, look, I’d still say that Republicans have the advantage in an off-year election with the Democrats controlling the White House and Congress, but I’m not so sure that Eric Cantor should be measuring the drapes quite yet.

UPDATE: Andrew Sullivan has a reality check.

  • The Richmonder

    The harder the Tea Party pushes, the worse the result will be for the Republicans.

  • DCCyclone

    PPP, the other credible pollster with generic numbers out this week, today has the generic ballot at a 43-43 tie.

    And Gallup has had a lot of zigzagging, not infrequently going from a tie to a 6-point GOP lead back to a tie, in just 3 successive weeks!

    The only way I’ll feel better is if Gallup is showing a Democratic edge in that same ballpark for a couple more weeks.

    Don’t get me wrong, today’s Gallup result boosts my morale a little rightly or wrongly, just as a single bad poll result this time of year drags down my morale rightly or wrongly.  But that’s just my emotional side reacting.

    My head, in contrast, says nothing has changed yet in the generic.

    I’ll say this, people are NOT reacting to the Wall Street reform bill.  The most important political event of the past week was not that legislation, but the oil leak getting successfully capped (and the last I read the “seeping” has been reported to be NOT from the exploded well, although news reports on these things can prove wrong).  Get that oil leak shut down, and that’s one less thing to bring morale down and give us a shot at helping people feel a little better.

    The 2nd most important political event recently for Democrats has been the 2 successive weeks of declines in the initial unemployment benefit claims, and HUGE declines at that, a total of 46,000 and now down to a 2-year weekly low of 429,000.  If that proves to preface a robust job growth total for July, and we get that again in August and September, we got a good shot at surprising everyone in November.

  • Historically, midterm elections are sobering to the party in power, and I don’t expect that to change any time soon.  But the difference between this election and 2008 is that it’s at heart a local election, not a national one.  (Even though Republicans would like to make it one.)  For instance, are Republicans in the 11th District of Virginia fired up to vote for Keith Fimian?  I don’t know.  Are Republicans in Nevada fired up to vote for Angle?  We don’t know that either.  Republicans in Texas can be fired up all they want for Perry, but will it be enough to take vulnerable seats?  Maybe, maybe not.  While it’s true that you can get a lot of mileage out of voting AGAINST someone, as Democrats know from 2002 and 2004, it’s hard to actually WIN that way.

  • The Richmonder

    If we fight this election, we may lose a few seats, but we’ll be okay.

    But what the Republicans and the MSM want is for us to give up and walk away in disgust.  

    Let’s not give them a free win.

  • TomPaine

    and too many things can happen that could determine the results of the election. Polls now, even if they are accurate, are only a snapshot in time and are outdated by the time they are published.

    I cannot remember an election in my lifetime as a voter (60 years) that has had so many issues that could change so much and so rapidly in the next four months, i.e. two wars, the economy, jobs, financial reform, health care reform, unemployment compensation, funding of state and local public services, transportation, terrorism, global climate change, energy policy, Democratic Party messaging, ad infinitum. Even during the New Deal years there were not as many important issues on the political table.