Dead Heat

24May10

I made a custom poll from Pollster here for a congressional generic ballot. For those not wanting to click over, it’s essentially a tie right now; Dem’s 45.6%, GOP 45.4%.

Basically, I removed all polls with a clear bias, plus Rasmussen. I’m not sure about the decision to exclude Rasmussen. On the one hand, there more “traditional” model of polling probably applies more to midterm elections—I think it’s safe to say that there will be a drop in the first-time Democratic voters that Obama got so much credit for winning. To his credit, Obama recognizes this weakness, and began to intensely target these same people in the last two months.

On the other hand, Rasmussen is becoming increasingly more conservative than its fellow polls. Scott Rasmussen has written editorials with conservatives undertones, and often allies himself with Fox News in polling venture. It’s true that Rasmussen faired very well during the last election, in fact it was the most accurate traditional poll. However, I think the general trend over the last two years shows that he’s become polarized.

So what to make of this? Well, I’d still guess that it’ll be a decent-sized net loss in the House for the Democrats, but they won’t lose it entirely. The heat of the health care debate seems to have died down, and without any mandates currently, I’m not sure “the average” American will be feeling the negative effects on that, and so Democrats should be able to spin that as an accomplishment.

There’s the BP disaster, but how can the party that chanted “drill, baby, drill” really hit Dems hard on that one? We’ve already seen Rand Paul call Obama’s words against BP “un-American” and now Sarah Palin, former governor of a state who used to let oil companies pay its citizens to be on their land, says that Obama is in bed with the oil companies. The Obama administration did screw up on this, but it’s like the GOP screwing up the deficit—no one really noticed because it was what each party was supposed to be good at.

There won’t be problems with Kagan, presumably. She won’t add any excitement to the liberal base, but she’s not great fodder for conservatives either. Immigration could be a hiccup. Check out the rather disturbing truth of the polling on the Arizona immigration law:

Eeep. And when you consider this:

Levine: Hold on, Mike — 71 percent said — this is the most interesting poll —71 percent of Americans think that legal Latino citizens will be harassed by police. 71 percent! So you have 71 percent of Americans thinking that Latinos, legals, will be harassed, and they still support the measure! [Note: Kelly shortly points out that the actual figure is 66 percent.]

So we’re living in a country that says demonstrably it’s ok to harass legal Latinos. I doubt very much then that immigration will be an issue as we build up to the midterms, and I suspect that, for all that we hear about it being a top priority, or the next big initiative for the administration, we won’t see any movement on it until 2013 at the earliest.

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