Just as an FYI, Democrats shouldn’t lose any sleep over the results from the special election in the California 25th. Turnout was down and Hillary Clinton won the district by 7 points in 2016. Even the RNC knows the victory will be short-lived. That’s why I doubt, given the huge fundraising advantage Democrats enjoy overall, that they’ll invest much in a return match this November.
In fact, judging by the slew of House Republicans who are retiring – 27 in all – it’s pretty obvious the GOP knows their chances of flipping the lower chamber are slim to none. And if the generic ballot polling is any indication, their instincts are correct.
Why is that so? Simple. With all the talk about whether polling is still a reliable method of predicting a political outcome, there’s one poll that over the last 14 years has proven to be spot on: and that is the generic ballot. It has consistently predicted which party would come out on top in the House of Representatives. Just check out the results of the last last seven House elections below.
- 2018: Democrats +7.3 – Net gain 41
- 2016: Democrats +0.6 – Net gain 6
- 2014: Republicans +2.4 – Net gain 13
- 2012: Democrats +1.2 – Net gain 8
- 2010: Republicans +9.4 – Net gain 63
- 2008: Democrats +9.0 – Net gain 21
- 2006: Democrats +11.5 – Net gain 31
The evidence is pretty conclusive. In fact, based on what we saw in 2018, if Democrats maintain or increase their current generic ballot lead, they’re likely to add to their majority. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit if the net gain is anywhere from half a dozen to 15 seats. So reliable is the generic ballot that if it were to spend a weekend in Vegas, it would come back with enough money to buy a couple of villas on the Mediterranean and a luxury yacht.
That’s why I’m bullish on Democrats keeping the House and even taking the Senate. According to the most recent polling in the upper chamber, things are looking pretty good. Thom Tillis is trailing Cal Cunningham by 7 points in the latest polling out of North Carolina. Likewise, Susan Collins is in trouble in Maine. She’s trailing Sara Gideon by 4 points. Both Republicans won handily six years ago.
In Colorado, Cory Gardner is trailing former governor John Hickenlooper by 13 points, though to be fair, there’s been no recent polling out of that state in quite some time. And In Arizona, Martha McSally has been trailing Mark Kelly since he got into the race last August. The RCP average has him up by 8.
As if that wasn’t bad enough for Republicans, Montana is now considered a tossup state. That’s right, Steve Bullock, the current governor and reluctant Senate candidate who had to literally have his arm twisted to see the light, is now within striking distance of flipping that seat from red to blue. And the news gets even better for Dems. Kris Kobach is only 2 points away from possibly winning the Republican nomination for the open seat in Kansas. Should he prevail in August, I fully expect this state to become a tossup as well.
And don’t get me started on Georgia, where incumbent Kelly Loffler could well be cell mates with North Carolina senator Richard Burr. Both have been accused of dumping stocks after receiving intelligence reports regarding the Coronavirus. The FBI seized Burr’s cell phone and computer and I fully expect them to do the same with Loffler. There’s nothing like a little insider trading to turn what should be a cakewalk into a nail biter. It wouldn’t shock me one bit if Democrats netted five seats in the Senate this Fall, and that’s with Doug Jones losing in Alabama.
Then there’s Trump. No president in the modern era has been so consistently underwater in the polls and won reelection. Not even Jimmy Carter was this unpopular. A litany of his exploits would fill an encyclopedia. Since Joe Biden entered the race, he has maintained a steady and consistent lead from as little as 4 points to as many as 9. But more importantly, he has led in a majority of the swing states, the very states Trump won in 2016 to capture the presidency. At present, Trump is trailing Biden nationally by 4.5 points and his approval rating stands at 45 percent.
The bottom line is I’ve seen nothing in these polls that would lead me to believe that they are not accurate. Indeed, all of them suggest that far from being concerned, Democrats should be encouraged. Both Trump and his band of miscreants aren’t fooling the electorate. Not this time. The amount of hatred people feel for this president is palpable. All Biden has to do is drive that home. With the right running mate and the right message, he can extricate from the White House the worst human being ever to occupy it.
And together with both the House and the Senate, they can begin the process of healing a country that has been torn asunder.