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August 20, 2009

Charlie Cook Report: "the situation this summer has slipped completely out of control for President Obama and Congressional Democrats;" Predicts Even Money Likelihood of Dems Losing 20+ Seats

Actually, he seems to be modeling a 6-12 seat loss, but then tosses out those models based on gut on other factors and figures it's just as likely the Dems will lose more than twenty seats as they'll lose less than twenty seats.

20+ seats is a bit of small beer after lefty blogger Nate Silver predicted 20-50 was a likely range. But still.

"Many veteran Congressional election watchers, including Democratic ones, report an eerie sense of déjà vu, with a consensus forming that the chances of Democratic losses going higher than 20 seats is just as good as the chances of Democratic losses going lower than 20 seats."

Cook scrupulously avoided any mention that Democratic control of the House is in jeopardy but, noting a new Gallup poll showing Congress’ job disapproval at 70 percent among independents, concluded that the post-recess environment could feel considerably different than when Congress left in August.

"We believe it would be a mistake to underestimate the impact that this mood will have on Members of Congress of both parties when they return to Washington in September, if it persists through the end of the Congressional recess."

It's not all sunshine, though. The dribs and drabs of the poll the Washington Post is releasing on the installment plan makes it clear how high a hill we have yet to climb.

Question 901 (yeah, 901, but it's not that far down): On partisan affiliation, 35% say Democrat, and another 15% lean Democratic. 50% is the grim number there.

Only 25% of the country self-identifies as Republican, with another 14% leaning our way.

Absent continuing bad news for Obama & Co., then, we need to hold all of our own and pick up all the true unaffiliateds just break even with the Democrats.

This is a reason not to be all dismissive of attempting to attract moderates. You might call it selling out. I tend to call it acknowledging reality. We do need to pick up the support of people not inclined to vote for us. And not just a few of those; most of those, at least as the situation now stands.

Thanks to AHFF Geoff for the WaPo tip.


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posted by Ace at 05:50 PM

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