The latest Gallup Poll suggests the GOP is poised for huge Congressional victories — a poll-recording-breaking lead by Republicans in the generic ballot:
Republicans lead by 51% to 41% among registered voters in Gallup weekly tracking of 2010 congressional voting preferences. The 10-percentage-point lead is the GOP’s largest so far this year and is its largest in Gallup’s history of tracking the midterm generic ballot for Congress.
These results are based on aggregated data from registered voters surveyed Aug. 23-29 as part of Gallup Daily tracking. This marks the fifth week in a row in which Republicans have held an advantage over Democrats — one that has ranged between 3 and 10 points.
The Republican leads of 6, 7, and 10 points this month are all higher than any previous midterm Republican advantage in Gallup’s history of tracking the generic ballot, which dates to 1942. Prior to this year, the highest such gap was five points, measured in June 2002 and July 1994. Elections in both of these years resulted in significant Republican gains in House seats.
That’s pretty definitive. It suggests that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will likely be ex-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and that the Senate could also be taken by the GOP. What it means: a nastier campaign. The Democrats will go negative to try and reverse the numbers and particularly hit hot buttons to get out its base, and the Republicans will be hitting all t hot buttons to get out its base. So far the Republican base is almost assured to get out in vote in droves. The Democrats? Far less likely.
Yesterday on Ed Schultz’s radio show a caller expressed a sentiment you hear on liberal talk shows and see in comments on some liberal blogs: some Democrats want to teach their own party “a lesson” by not voting. Just like they taught it a lesson in the past by sitting home when GOPers voted — which led to huge chunks of the Democratic agenda sandbagged, longer stints of Republicans in the White House, and the Democrats losing parts of their influence in the courts and bureaucracy. These Democrats forget how tough it is to regain power lost when another party has the power they seek in the short term and long run.
*** Caveat emptor: Many are touting the new Gallup poll showing Republicans with a 10-point lead in the generic ballot among registered voters — the largest GOP lead in the history of the poll. But we said it last month when Gallup showed Dems with the generic-ballot edge, and we’ll say it again now: Live by the Gallup daily tracking, die by the Gallup daily tracking.
Joe Gandelman is a former fulltime journalist who freelanced in India, Spain, Bangladesh and Cypress writing for publications such as the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek. He also did radio reports from Madrid for NPR’s All Things Considered. He has worked on two U.S. newspapers and quit the news biz in 1990 to go into entertainment. He also has written for The Week and several online publications, did a column for Cagle Cartoons Syndicate and has appeared on CNN.