There are a lot of polls out there saying a lot of different things about Democrats' chances next month. They generally range from predicting big losses to predicting huge losses. However, because I am a realist (which is to say, I am a pessimist), and because I usually defer to Nate Silver on these matters, I'm bracing myself for massive losses…
Gallup's weekly tracking of the generic ballot [gives] Republicans a 3-point edge among registered voters — well within the range that Gallup has shown in recent weeks. But Gallup also introduced its likely voter model this week, and there, Republicans' advantage was much larger: 13 points under one scenario — what Gallup calls a "higher turnout" scenario — and 18 points in another, "lower turnout" version of the model.
Those are absolutely terrifying numbers for Democrats. Although it's not completely straightforward to translate the generic ballot into actual votes, were Democrats to lose the House popular vote by anything resembling that margin, their losses could be catastrophic. According to one formula that models turnover in the House based on the Gallup likely voter model specifically, a 13-point lead for the G.O.P. would translate into a gain of 71 (!) seats — and an 18-point, lead, a gain of 86 (!!) seats.
Hmmmm… If only there were some sort of sweeping legislation that will improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans that the could point to as something for which the fought and won during this past congress. If only…
Too bad they don't a whole pile of great ideas like the Republicans, huh?
Tags: Democrats, Midterms, Nate Silver, Polls