With every passing day and with every new poll we gain greater clarity about what could happen in the crucial November elections. All the recent news has been positive for Republicans. Actually, it may be fairer to say that it’s been negative for Democrats. But regardless of which side of that argument you take the bottom line remains the same: The GOP has a tremendous opportunity to make substantial gains if they’re supporters have the will to see it through.
Take a look at some of the more recent data points:
1. President Obama is increasingly unpopular: History tells us that the president’s approval rating is strongly correlated with the share of the president’s party’s congressional delegation. That is especially true in midterm elections, which generally act as an outlet for voters to express their opinion of the president. And right now President Obama’s approval is hovering near his all-time low. Dan Balz writes about a new poll conducted by the Washington Post:
The president’s overall approval rating is 42 percent, near a low for his presidency. Disapproval stands at 51 percent, not quite as high as it was during the worst of the controversy over the botched rollout of HealthCare.gov in the fall of 2013.
The president’s approval rating isn’t the only thing that has taken a recent hit. His mishandling of the ISIS threat and Russian aggression have pushed his approval rating for international affairs down to 38 percent, by far the lowest it has been during his presidency. And the economy’s lingering malaise coupled with slow job growth—which are the two issues voters care most about—have pushed the president’s approval down to 42 percent on economic issues.
It’s little wonder then why a majority of Americans consider Obama’s presidency a “failure.” Failure is a strong word, much stronger than merely “disapprove,” so the fact that so many Americans (including 25% of Democrats) were willing to use it to describe President Obama’s tenure indicates the vehemence of voters’ emotion towards him.
2. The public’s opinion of Obamacare is not improving: Unlike the media narrative that Democrats pushed over the past several weeks, Americans are not warming to the idea that Obamacare is a ringing success. In fact, new polling shows support for Democrats’ unpopular health law continues to fade. Sarah Ferris reports for The Hill:
Public approval of ObamaCare continued to sink this summer, issuing the latest warning for vulnerable Democrats who will face voters this fall after backing the law.
Just 35 percent of voters now support the Affordable Care Act, down 3 percentage points from May, according to a monthly poll by the Kaiser Health Foundation released on Tuesday. Support for the healthcare overhaul law once stood at 50 percent, just weeks after it was signed in 2010.
Although Democrats are doing their best to tap-dance around the issue of Obamacare, many are finding it tough to put any distance between them and their previous votes. If recent polling and special election results are any indication, the deepening dislike for Democrats’ signature policy “achievement” could push them into the minority.
3. Polling suggests we may have a “wave” on our hands: A bevy of recent polling—helpfully compiled by HotAir’s Gus Benson—now has Republican candidates leading in five seats that are currently held by Democrats. In Alaska, Arkansas, Louisiana, Michigan, and North Carolina, Republican candidates have the lead and the momentum, while GOP challengers are within three points in Colorado, Iowa and New Hampshire. And that’s not to mention Montana, South Dakota and West Virginia, which look like sure pick-ups this cycle. Taken together, this sure looks like a wave election. Stu Rothenberg reports for RollCall:
I’ve witnessed 17 general elections from my perch in D.C., including eight midterms, and I sometimes develop a sense of where the cycle is going before survey data lead me there. Since my expectations constitute little more than an informed guess, I generally keep them to myself.
This year is different. I am sharing them with you.
After looking at recent national, state and congressional survey data and comparing this election cycle to previous ones, I am currently expecting a sizable Republican Senate wave.
But don’t let polls or positive vibes fool you – this election will be close. And that’s why College Republicans will be putting boots on the ground in every race to help win back the Senate for a new generation of Republican candidates. We can do this. You can help.