Tuesday, August 31, 2010

And There's Not a Damn Thing They Can Do About It

Nate Silver looks at the latest Gallup numbers,
The poll stealing the headlines this morning is from Gallup, and for good reason: it gives the Republicans a whopping 10-point lead on the generic ballot. This is, in fact, a record for the Republicans: Gallup has been conducting this survey for almost 70 years, and Republicans have never managed to have quite that large of an edge before...

Making matters worse still for Democrats, Gallup’s survey — and some other generic ballot polls — are still polling registered rather than likely voters, whereas its polls of likely voters are generally more reliable in midterm elections. At FiveThirtyEight, we’ve found that the gap between registered and likely voter polls this year is about 4 points in the Republicans’ favor — so a 10-point lead in a registered voter poll is the equivalent of about 14 points on a likely-voter basis. Thus, even if this particular Gallup survey was an outlier, it’s not unlikely that we’ll begin to see some 8-, 9- and 10-point leads for Republicans in this poll somewhat routinely once Gallup switches over to a likely voter model at some point after Labor Day — unless Democrats do something to get the momentum back.

I don't know what it is Democrats can do "to get the momentum back." The economy is, if anything, going to get worse between November and now. Democrats are going to get rolled in November because of the economy and it's too late to do anything substantive about the economy. Any policies enacted after the recess won't have an effect until next spring - at best. But it's not like no one warned of this, it is an entirely predictable path that Congressional Democrats are on.

I'm admittedly very, very pessimistic but at this point the best Dems can hope for is controlling the narrative so that the election isn't seen as a "refudiation" of Obama.

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