Why do most rank-and-file Democrats not foresee a GOP takeover of either the House or Senate?


Most professional political pundits are saying that Republicans likely will win control of the U.S. House in the November elections and might win the Senate as well.

Curiously, however, relatively few ordinary Democratic voters see it that way, according to a recent poll. Nor is such peculiar optimism anything new. In 2006, rank-and-file Republican voters were similarly oblivious to the likelihood that their party would suffer big losses in the midterm elections of that year, which is exactly what happened.

Josh Marshall PONDERS this strange disconnect among ordinary partisans.

UPDATE: A new poll released just this morning also shows that few Democratic voters expect the GOP to win control of either house of Congress.

This poll has some other interesting numbers as well — most notably with respect to the generical congressional ballot, which shows a Republican-Democratic tie among likely voters.

The story is HERE and the raw data are HERE.



  1. Democrats are wise not to admit defeat, because doing such would probably anger your constituents. Its still possible the Democrats can retain both sides of Congress if they send out the right message.

    Here is my recommendation for the Democrats

    1. Promote the end to the Iraq war. Most people don’t know Bush put the agreements in place for troop withdraw in place. Take ownership of the withdraw and also putting an end to Afghan conflict. More people believe the Democrats have a better chance of withdrawing troops from Afghanistan than the Republicans.

    2. Stem Cell research. Most Americans favor government spending for it. For that matter, Democrats are the more trustworthy party for environmental issues. Promote it.

    3. Biggest Financial reform bill since the 1930s. While Democrats certainly share the blame in the current recession, Republicans could have done more to prevent it under Bush, and they didn’t.

    4. Credit Card financial reform to cut down on predatory lending practices was passed thanks to the Democrats.

    5. Prohibited cell phones from federal prisoners

    Here is my recommendation for the Republicans

    1. Democrats spending out of control. They don’t even have a budget anymore, they literally gave themselves a blank check. They have no clue on how to reduce the deficit.

    2. Health care bill sucks.

    3. Most Americans favor stronger greater security for protecting our borders. Take advantage of it.

    4. Republicans have a greater chance of enacting bills to stimulate job growth.

    5. Lower taxes. Cut government spending.

  2. Neftali: I’m not sure you understand the point of this post.

    You say: “Democrats are wise not to admit defeat, because doing such would probably anger your constituents.” But this post is about the optimism of ordinary Democratic voters, not Democratic politicians.

    In any event, I think you’ll find some interesting stuff in the update I’ve posted since you submitted your comment.

  3. Robert Pace

    I ‘ll take a stab at this. Projecting the future and trying to manage it before it arrives is a management skill. It requires vision and preparing for potential and probable outcomes not yet encountered but predicted based on current and historical factors.

    Most people, even though they manage household budgets, aren’t real good at projecting future results based on speculation using current data and historical outcomes from the past. I think the bank loan mess has shown us that many rank and file people make decisions based on hopeful results rather than real data, thus they got caught in loans they hoped they could pay back rather than knew they could pay back.

    The people that see potential losses for the dems are paying attention to a lot more indicators than the general public. Let’s face it, not all people are political junkies like most if not all of us that post on these type blogs.

    PS – I didn’t read the linked article.. Just basing my opinion on Pat’s comments… I see the dems losing the house minimally but its early in the game.. and October surprise is still a secret.

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