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Numbers

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July 27, 2022 11:52 a.m.

New Georgia Senate poll out this morning from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Warnock 46%, Walker 43%. This is in line with other recent polls which show a modest but consistent Warnock lead. Meanwhile, three new congressional generic polls have come out over the last 24 hours, two of which give the Democrats a six point advantage and one of which gives a 4 point margin. One of those 6 point margins is actually a Republican Party poll. Why they chose to release it I’m really not sure.

Various other midterm metrics continue to move slowly but perceptibly in Democrats’ direction. As we’ve discussed at various points over the last few weeks, the House especially is still very much an uphill battle for Democrats. But this trend makes me think Democrats holding the House in November is definitely possible and getting more likely. Not remotely a lost cause.

One additional data point is this write up of one of those new congressional generic ballot polls, the one from Morning Consult/Politico. It notes the continuing disconnect between the popularity of President Biden and the popularity of members of his party serving in Congress. That persistent disjuncture is one factor that has led to a growing reevaluation of the dynamics of this election. Polling density has increased enough over the last few months that observers have decided that the disjuncture isn’t a fluke or an artifact of limited polling. They’re not moving in unison. And that’s definitely not the norm. The new Morning Consult poll suggests that the January 6th hearings are seriously souring independents on Donald Trump. And that shift is, in turn, showing up in the generic ballots numbers.

At least according to this one poll, the weight of the January 6th hearings is pushing voters to see the midterms more as a choice between Republicans and Democrats than a referendum on the President or the state of the country generally.

Over the last six weeks the 538 average of the congressional generic ballot has moved from a 2.6 point GOP advantage to a .5 point GOP advantage. That is a small movement. But across dozens of polls and probably tens of thousands of voters we can be fairly confident that this is a real movement rather than statistical noise. Two points still is relatively small. But remember, we’re talking about a spectrum in which the distance between Democrats holding the House and getting blown out in a wave is measured in perhaps 6 or at most 7 points. So in that context it’s a big move.

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