I keep thinking that people like Mark Halperin are crazy to believe that Republicans could pick up as many as 60 seats. Then I see generic-ballot polls like this don’t know what to think. Sky’s the limit?
I’m going to hit you with a little healthy eeyorism in a moment, but first, groove on these numbers. Especially the spread among indies and on the question of enthusiasm.
To put this in perspective, until this month, the biggest lead the GOP had held in the history of Gallup’s polling was … five points. Why the eeyorism, then? Well, (a) Rasmussen has new generic ballot numbers out today too and the GOP’s actually lost a few points since last week, driving them down to their smallest lead since mid-July. Not sure how to square that with Gallup, especially since Ras polls likely voters and Gallup polls registered voters. The enthusiasm gap should mean a bigger spread among the former than the latter (and until today, it has), and if Gallup’s numbers are merely a reaction to last week’s dismal economic news, it’s surpassingly strange that the same reaction isn’t showing up in Rasmussen. Also, (b) Gallup’s generic-ballot polling has already produced one freaky outlier this summer. Granted, today’s numbers are more credible because they’re part of a trend, but read this Jay Cost piece about how bouncy Gallup’s numbers have historically been at times. Hmmmm.
For your viewing pleasure, here’s MSNBC and Newsweek teaming up this morning to give the left a pep talk. You trust Newsweek’s numbers, don’t you? Sucker! Click the image to watch.