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November 11, 2009

Tremor: Republicans Now Have Same 4% Edge in Generic Congressional Ballot They Had in 1994

Actually, the "same" edge is misleading but it's close enough. Depending on what month you look at, Republicans were either tied with the Democrats (near the elections) or had some 1-5% advantage running up to the elections:

The pattern, as explained by Gallup, is that when Democrats do well in elections, this is prefigured by big double-digit leads in the Congressional generic. When Republicans do well, it's prefigured by Republicans either being tied or just a tad ahead.

The technical definition of a "tad" is 4%:

Of course this is one poll and it might turn out to be one of those occasional samples that actually favor Republicans.

Having said that, I don't know whether to take Independents' shift as an earthquake or an outlier. Because, according to Gallup, Independents now favor Republicans by a 12 point edge.

Did I say 12? I meant 22.

Byron York writes:

It's an extraordinary turnaround for the GOP. Last July, Democrats held a six-point lead. Last December, Democrats held a 15-point lead. At one point in 2007, Democrats held a 23-point lead, and for all of that year, 2007, Democrats held a double-digit lead.

The new Republican lead is the result of a dramatic move of independents toward the Republican party. In the new poll, according to Gallup, the GOP leads among independents, 52 percent to 30 percent -- whopping 22-point margin. Last month, the Republican lead among independents was just nine points, and in July, the GOP lead was a single point. So among independents, the Republican lead has gone from one point to 22 points in less than six months -- with much of lead accumulating in the last month.

'This administration has pulled off an astonishing hat trick -- they have irritated Democrats, alienated independents and energized Republicans," says the Republican National Committee in a statement on the poll released this morning.

Here's the downside: This poll, if confirmed, may actually make it more likely, not less, that ObamaCare passes.

Consider: If you are 90% sure you are headed for a midterm blowout almost as bad as 1994 anyway, and realize that there's mostly nothing you can do about that (it's the economy, stupid), does that make you shrink from passing big liberal legislation your party has agitated for for decades, or does that give you the courage and serenity of a man on death row who just exhausted his final appeal?

Update: I have been emailed by an executive at MSNBC informing me that Chris Matthews has developed "secondary post-traumatic stress disorder" just by being told about this poll by someone else.

Damnit! Purple Avenger posted this last night. Oh well. It's not a repost, it's a recontextualization.

Plus mine has pretty pretty graphs.

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posted by Ace at 11:57 AM

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