Democratic Generic Congressional Ballot Advantage Trending Down

A Monmouth Poll released on Wednesday that shows the heavily hyped Democratic generic Congressional ballot advantage has virtually disappeared is the latest poll indicating Democratic chances for major Congressional midterm gains are trending down.

On December 22, the Real Clear Politics Average of Polls gave Democrats a 13-point advantage in the generic Congressional ballot.

Breitbart News reported last month — when the January 19 Real Clear Politics Average of Polls gave Democrats a 7.8-point advantage in the generic Congressional ballot — “the heavily hyped 2018 ‘Blue Wave’ on which the 77-year-old’s dream of Democratic Party restoration rests may have already reached its crest.”

The Real Clear Politics Average of Polls as of February 1 still shows Democrats have a 7.3 percent generic Congressional ballot advantage, but the more recent polls included in that average show the advantage to be much lower.

That number represents the average of 12 respected polls completed between January 11 and January 30.

Three of those polls were completed on January 30 and gave the Democrats a 4.3 percent generic Congressional ballot advantage. (Monmouth — Democrats +2, Economist/YouGov — Democrats +5, and Reuters/Ipsos — Democrats +6).

The nine polls included in the current Real Clear Politics Average of Polls completed between January 11 and January 29 gave the Democrats an 8.3 percent generic Congressional ballot advantage.

As Breitbart News noted on Wednesday, the Monmouth Poll showing the Democrats with a 2-point generic Congressional ballot advantage was “well within the poll’s 3.5 percent margin of error” and was “conducted over three days almost entirely before President Donald Trump’s well-received State of the Union Address.”

The three most recent  generic Congressional ballot polls may slightly overstate the modest 4.3 percent Democratic advantage since none exclusively polled “likely voters.”

Both the Monmouth Poll completed on January 30 that shows a Democratic +2 generic Congressional ballot advantage and The YouGov Poll completed on January 30 that shows a Democratic +5 Congressional generic ballot advantage were of registered voters, not likely voters. (See question 103 for the Economist/YouGov Poll data on that question.)

The Reuters/Ipsos Poll released on January 30 that shows a Democratic +6 generic Congressional ballot advantage was not of registered voters, but of “all adult Americans,” meaning some of the respondents were not registered voters.

As Breitbart News reported previously — due to the Congressional district gerrymandering advantage Republicans enjoy after Republican-controlled state legislatures redrew Congressional district boundary lines following the 2010 Census — Democrats need about a 5 percent actual nationwide Congressional vote advantage in order to win an equal number of seats.

Using that standard, the 4.3 percent Democratic generic Congressional ballot advantage shown in the three polls completed on January 30 suggests that Democrats might actually lose a few seats in the House of Representatives if the 2018 Congressional midterms were held today.

As Breitbart News reported last month, “Democrats need to win 218 of the 435 seats of the House in the November 2018 midterm elections,” in order to take back the majority:

They currently have 193 seats, and are almost certain to keep the seat in Michigan vacated by the resignation of Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), so that means they need to place a Democrat into 24 of the 238 seats that are currently held by a Republican and the three vacant seats with pending special elections from which Republican members recently resigned–Pat Tiberi (R-OH), Trent Franks (R-AZ), and Tim Murphy (R-PA).

If the Democratic downward slide in the generic Congressional ballot continues, political pundits may begin talking about a “Red Resurgence” instead of a “Blue Wave” when it comes to the 2018 Congressional midterm elections.


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