If you thought that Republicans had already gotten enthusiastic for this year’s midterms, you haven’t seen anything yet. Gallup reports today that the generic Congressional ballot moved back into a tie this week, after getting its first Republican lead ever in last week’s survey. However, GOP enthusiasm increased four points, while Democratic voter enthusiasm has plateaued 19 points below:
Gallup Daily tracking for the week ending April 4 finds the two major parties tied at 46% in the congressional voting preferences of registered voters nationally. In the two weeks since Congress passed healthcare reform on March 21, Democrats have tied or trailed the Republicans, after having at least a slight advantage in the weeks prior.
Given Republicans’ typical voter turnout advantage in midterm elections, even Republican parity with the Democrats in the candidate preferences of registered voters could translate into significant Republican gains on Election Day. …
Enthusiasm rose among both parties after passage of healthcare reform on March 21, but has since leveled off among Democrats. The four percentage-point increase last week among Republicans (from 50% to 54%) is not statistically significant, but would be meaningful if it is maintained in this week’s tracking.
I’m not sure what that last part is supposed to mean. Republican enthusiasm has increased in the last three weeks, going from 39% on March 14th to 54% now. Is Gallup saying that it needs another week of increase to call that significant?
The enthusiasm gap keeps widening in favor of Republicans, and that is significant. The anger from the radical Democratic agenda has GOP voters motivated and in an activist mood. That is apart from the normally better turnout of Republicans in the general adult population (the kind of sampling used by Gallup), and it doesn’t just include registered Republicans. Independents will be more motivated this year to show up at the polls and vote against the Democrats they helped elect in the last two election cycles.