The electoral aftermath of the shutdown

Let’s also look at what is the most important electoral predictor for midterm elections: presidential job approval. There’s something of a mixed bag here. These are the polls in the RCP Average for job approval that also surveyed the public in the month before the shutdown began:

The evidence here isn’t consistent with a big surge for the Democrats. Fox News shows a relatively large spike in Obama’s approval, while Rasmussen Reports shows a relatively large drop-off. Everything else has remained roughly the same. Obama is still nowhere near the type of job approval numbers that he’ll probably need before we can start talking seriously about Democrats taking back the House.

But isn’t the Republican brand so far in the tank that it doesn’t matter? There’s no doubt that it took a hit. But let’s look a bit closer at the Pew poll, and compare its various measurements to polls taken just before elections in other years. Here are the job approval numbers…

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