10.21.2018 09:30 AM

Out at sea, a blue wave is gathering


  1. Ronald O'Dowd says:

    I don’t like vague concepts like Prefer.

    The other thing that rings with a lack of clarity is Likely voters.

    They should be going with: (A)re you 99% committed to voting in the midterms (Yes) or (No) and

    a) which party will you vote for Senate (if applicable) and b) which for the House?

    c) Are the mid-terms a referendum on Trump and does that make you more committed to voting a) Republican b) Democrat c) Independent

  2. Peter says:

    Maybe. In fact, given what they are up against, it would be pretty embarrassing if they didn’t do well. After all, it’s Trump vs. nobody and the independents will decide it. But the wave may prove to be choppy if they don’t get out of their self-righteous mindset. Obama got creamed in the 2010 mid-terms but still won in 2012 because he had a real live opponent who didn’t work for enough people. Who’s going to carry the can for the Dems in 2020? Nobody promising I can see, unless one believes the American electorate will be swayed by identity politics catechisms and Hitler analogies.

  3. Gyor says:

    Because they nailed it during the last presidential election, oh wait oops…

    Seriously it’s still anyone’s game, both sides are aweful.

    • Jim says:

      The polls predicting popular vote in the 2016 Presidential Election were, by and large, quite accurate. The only one that was really off was one that had Trump ahead of Clinton in the popular vote by a few percentage points. All of the others had Clinton ahead by 1-4%.

      What they got wrong were the Electoral College predictions, which often involves mixing polls with differing methodologies and is far less reliable.

      • Fred from BC says:

        “The polls predicting popular vote in the 2016 Presidential Election ”

        Meaningless, of course, since the Americans don’t use the popular vote to elect their government.

        “What they got wrong were the Electoral College predictions,”

        Yes. The only ones that actually mattered, the ones that *do* select their government, they got wrong.

  4. Pedant says:

    The breakdown of the above categories always looks like that though.

    The only thing noteworthy there is the senior vote going Democrat. That alone can certainly flip many many House seats, particularly in Florida.

    Likely result seems to be a Democratic House with a comfortable (but not overwhelming) majority, while the Senate remains Republican.

  5. Jack says:

    Republicans are fucked.

    There is no saving their ship at this point, they are going to lose the House.

    They spent their political capital in callously forcing Kavanaugh’s appointment to the SCOTUS and have breathed a fire of anger into Democratic volunteers and voters that they just cannot compete with.

    With Democrats controlling even just the House, the White House is going to face a tenfold increase in pressure and I’m not sure they are remotely prepared or equipped for it. The Trump admin has been coddle for two years now by Congress and a Democratic House is going to mean significant scrutiny and attention on the WH.

    • pierre lawayne says:

      and coddled by the media who are making a killing financially from the lunacy of Trump.

    • Ian says:

      Counterintuitively, a lot of the polling shows the Kavanaugh affair has not hurt the Republicans. They were already in serious trouble, Kavanaugh just made their negatives that much more intense with voters who were already not going to vote for them. On the flip side, it appears to have increased the Republican’s base participation. Races that looked close in August, such as Cruz-O’Rourke, just aren’t that close anymore.

      Democrats still have a real shot at the House, but the polls at least are not showing that anger as having much effect yet.

      • Jack says:

        On the contrary, Ian.

        A poll done for Politico shows that it is in fact the Democrats who saw an increase in support following the confirmation of Kavanaugh.

        Republicans did manage to close the gap during the hearings, but the end result has lead to a quantifiable jump in energy amongst the Democrats and increased their favourability on the generic ballot.

        There actually aren’t any statistics that clearly indicate that Republicans are in a better overall position than Democrats following the Kavanaugh confirmation. The poll Warren has posted above done for NBC clearly indicates that Republicans continue to lag behind in key measures.

        I also don’t think using the Cruz/O’Rourke race as a litmus for the Kavanaugh hangover is reliably evidential. The Senate was always a long shot for Democrats and the hardening of Republican support in Senate races can easily be attributed to the nature of those particular states and voter polarization. It is not at all indicative of the broader engagement level.

        Ultimately, it will come out to each party’s GOTV efforts, but Democrats have seen an increase and solidifying of enthusiasm on their side – which is half the battle.


        • Ian says:

          See the Washington Post-ABC polls, particularly the one that was published last week. The fact that it is repeated provides somewhat better tracking of the impact, I think. Like so much of US politics now, the effect appears to have been polarizing. Some moderate red-state Democrats are in a much tougher position now, while some Republicans who were running close in urban areas now seem to be dead in the water.

          Don’t really disagree about the Texas race, the fact that it went to over 10% in some polls about the same time may be coincidental.

  6. Gord Tulk says:

    An NAACP polls has blacks favouring Trump/GOP at 21%. Even at 15% that means electoral nuclear winter for Dems.

    This is the most consequential midterm since the one that happened in Grants second term.

    But IMO it is also the most unpredictable EVER.

  7. James Smith says:

    Don’t count your chickens before they are hatched.
    The former “Republican” Party has continued to work its level best at voter suppression for years, and together with gerrymandering they will win the senate & may keep the House close.
    The failure of BHO was not only was he in all in but name a Republican, he failed to compete in midterms or in down ballot races in 2012, or 2014. His SCOTUS pick and the failure of the nomination of many, many judges is part of his legacy and that will colour many legislatures and other races for a long, long time.
    The Dems need to win by at least 10% to pull within a draw.
    AMERICA IS F’D because the vested interest want it so.

  8. Gord says:

    I worry a bit about another “Bradley effect”. I think it’s safe to say there were more than a few Trump voters in 2016 who did not want to admit it to pollsters.

    Big leads among black, Latino and 18-34 voters are pretty meaningless since these groups have poor turnout in midterm elections. The gender gap is about the same as usual. If you’re pulling for the Dems, then maintaining healthy leads among college-educated whites, seniors and independents are what matter in this cycle.

    I think the House is still up for grabs. Whoever wins will have a tiny (5-10 seat) majority.

    I predict the GOP will increase their margin in the Senate. The map is terrible for Democrats. Heidi Heitkamp is toast in North Dakota, and the Dems will quite likely lose Missouri and Indiana. They have an outside chance to win Arizona and Nevada, but the fact they should be solidly in the lead in Nevada (but aren’t) is telling. Gazing into my crystal ball, I see a net pickup for the Republicans of at least one seat.

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