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Think The GOP Will Make Big Gains In 2010?

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I suppose it’s possible, but more and more evidence is pointing to the contrary.

Here’s some telling info from a Washington Post/ABC News poll out yesterday…

Poll respondents are evenly divided when asked whether they have confidence in Obama to make the right decisions for the country’s future, but just 19 percent express confidence in the Republicans in Congress to do so. Even among Republicans, only 40 percent express confidence in the GOP congressional leadership to make good choices.

Only 20 percent of adults identify themselves as Republicans, little changed in recent months, but still the lowest single number in Post-ABC polls since 1983. Political independents continue to make up the largest group, at 42 percent of respondents; 33 percent call themselves Democrats.

The wide gap in partisan leanings and the lack of confidence in the GOP carries into early assessments of the November 2010 midterm elections: Fifty-one percent say they would back the Democratic candidate in their congressional district if the elections were held now, while 39 percent would vote for the Republican. Independents split 45 percent for the Democrat, 41 percent for the Republican.

There’s some pretty startling numbers in there and the GOP should definitely be concerned.

  • When less than 20% of the voting population has confidence in your leadership abilities and only 40% of your own diehards trust your opinion, you know something’s wrong. I’ve been saying this time and time again over the past 9 months, but the Republicans can’t just be the opposition party. They need a new Contract With America…and fast.
  • Only 20% of voters ID as Repubs. 13% more ID as Dems. That’s a huge gap. And if Dems pass health care reform with some key Repub votes, expect the gap to get bigger since Indys will view the legislation as bipartisan as was possible.
  • On a generic ballot, voters go for Dems by 12%. That’s landslide territory. And Indys would have to break for Repubs almost two to one to make up the gap. We all know that won’t happen.

Now, do I think the GOP may gain a few seats next Fall? Quite possibly. But the balance of power should remain roughly where it is right now.

More as it develops…