A new poll suggest Democrats’ hopes for holding onto the House after this fall’s midterm elections aren’t quite dead just yet.
While most projections anticipate that Republicans will easily retake control and slow the agenda of President Joe Biden, the new Morning Consult-Politico poll shows a dead heat.
This poll didn’t look at specific candidates or races.
9 drugs linked to Alzheimer’s disease? [sponsored]
Instead, it looked at what’s known as the generic ballot, asking voters if they intended to vote for a Democrat or a Republican candidate for the House.
Voters were split evenly, with 42 percent on either side and 16 percent undecided.
Still, the poll represents a drop for Democrats, who led the generic ballot by two points in the same poll earlier this month, and had a four-point edge last September.
In addition, other polls have been much less favorable to Democrats.
The RealClearPolitics average shows the GOP holding an average lead of nearly three points, while a poll earlier this month from highly respected Quinnipiac University gave Republicans a five-point advantage.
And the analytics firm Gallup, known for its relentless polling, recently noted that the Democrats are facing a perfect storm of factors.
“The current Democratic congressional majority is facing an extremely unfavorable election environment,” a recent Gallup analysis stated bluntly.
The polling agency said the party of a new president loses an average of 23 House seats during the midterms, but cautioned that “2022 is not shaping up to be an average year.”
The Democrats are facing widespread public dissatisfaction, giving basement-level approval ratings to President Joe Biden, Congress, current economic conditions and more.
“Each of those metrics is at least 10 points lower than the historical average at the time of past midterm elections, and most are on pace to be the worst of such readings,” Gallup noted.
On the ground, the picture is even grimmer for Democrats.
The Cook Political Report rates 188 seats as “safe” for Republicans, along with 11 that are likely and 10 more that lean toward the GOP.
That’s 209 seats off the bat… or just nine shy of the 218 needed for a majority.
Democrats, on the other hand, have just 162 seats considered “safe,” along with 13 likely and 13 that lean, for a total of just 188, more than 30 seats short of the 220 they hold today.
One longtime insider recently predicted the potential for the biggest sweep in nearly 75 years.
“I think we’ll pick up between 25 and 70 seats in the House,” former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R, predicted on Fox News.
While few believe the GOP will win quite that many seats, most predict a rout.
“Democrats are in as bad a shape as they have been at this point of a midterm election as they have been in many decades,” CNN’s Chris Cillizza wrote last week. “And what’s worse for the party is that there’s no obvious event or series of events that could (or will) turn things around.”
But it’s not all good news for the GOP: While the party needs to flip just one seat to take control over the Senate, the candidates so far aren’t burning up the polls.
“The Republican Senate team in 2022 isn’t as strong as it was eight years ago,” Matthew Continetti of the American Enterprise Institute wrote in the National Review. “The roster this year looks more like it did in 2010 and 2012. And those seasons were disappointing.”
He urged those candidates to move away from Donald Trump if they hope to take the Senate.
“No one wants to relive the frustration and fury of 2011 through 2015, when Republicans controlled only the House of Representatives,” he wrote. “GOP Senate candidates need to recognize, quickly, that elections are won not in Mar-a-Lago but in the suburbs, as they surf the red wave headed toward Washington.”
— Walter W. Murray is a reporter for The Horn News. He is an outspoken conservative and a survival expert.