Polling Suggests Tea Party Could Lose House

Latest results based on polling by Gallup taken after the tea partys debt-ceiling deal, the S&P credit downgrade and subsequent stock market fall
Latest results based on polling by Gallup taken after the tea party's debt-ceiling deal, the S&P credit downgrade and subsequent stock market fall

Independent voters gave the tea party control of the U.S. House in 2010. Now 68 percent of independents disapprove of House Republicans.

Tom Jensen, Public Policy Polling:

I think most national pundits continue to be missing the boat on how possible it is that Democrats will retake control of the House next year. We find Democrats with a 7 point lead on the generic Congressional ballot this week at 47-40. After getting demolished with independent voters last year, they now hold a slight 39-36 advantage with them. And in another contrast to 2010 Democratic voters are actually slightly more unified than Republicans, with 83 percent committed to supporting the party’s Congressional candidates compared to 80 percent in line with theirs.

This poll is certainly not an outlier. We have looked at the generic ballot 11 times going back to the beginning of March and Democrats have been ahead every single time, by an average margin of about 4 points. This 7 point advantage is the largest Democrats have had and if there was an election today I’m thinking that they’d take back the House…

There’s little doubt that Democrats are winning the fallout of the debt debate. Approval for Congressional Republicans has now plunged to a 25/65 spread. That’s a 21 point decline on the margin from when they started the year at 33/52. Last year independent voters were the driving factor behind the GOP retaking the House majority. Now they give it a 20/68 approval rating.

It’s early — but it looks very plausible that we could be back to Speaker Pelosi 17 months from now. (Emphasis added.)

Andrew Sullivan:

My money is on a Democratic House and a chastened Republican Senate in 2013 … My reason for the shift: the staggering recklessness of the GOP in recent months. It goes hand in hand with Obama’s turn-around against a generic Republican.

Except that GOP Senate leader Mitch McConnell the pro-failure caucus he leads are incapable of being “chastened,” so I’m not sure what Sully means by that.


  • Vicki
    August 13, 2011 - 8:13 pm | Permalink

    What a lovely report of the country turning away for the right wing ruination that the tea party and republicans brought to our economy, our country and our stock market.

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  • Robert N.
    August 14, 2011 - 5:56 am | Permalink

    The Democrats are their own worst enemy. With the Republicans wanting to do away with Social Security, and Medicare they will lose the Senior vote. This is the Deocrats best issue. However, Obama may well fuck it up by again, and again trying to appease the Republicans by wanting to limit Social Security, and Medicare. Obama has not communicated with the American voters. Instead of bouncing around and giving campaign speeches, he should address the nation in prime time, and let the voters know just how the Republican’s in Congress are obstructing his efforts to get the ecomomy back on track. He is afraid to use the words ‘Republicans’, and ‘Tea Party’, when talking about the Republicans, and the Tea Party members blocking legisgation.

  • John M
    August 14, 2011 - 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Independents didn’t “give control of the house to the tea party” in 2010: independents simply didn’t turn out because Democrats didn’t give them a reason to vote (70% of the public wanted a public health care option). A similar scenario is likely to occur in 2012 considering the right wing policies pursued by the Obama administration contrasted with the overwhelmingly progressive policies supported by ~70% of the public. Pundits have to stop thinking about independents being “moderates” in the middle, between Republicans and Democrats. Many independents in fact appear to be to the left of the Democratic party, which points to the nonsense of Democrats moving to the right to seek the independent vote.

  • J. R. Phipps
    August 14, 2011 - 8:27 pm | Permalink

    I think John M is right on and I would like to say that right wing austerity does not work. Right wing policies got us into this mess and Obama’s right wing policies will not get us out. I think the Tea Party and Obama could loose in the coming elections!

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