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Sunday, August 15, 2010

GOP Less Loved than Dems

I have mentioned more than once this week that Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth Sandlin ought to avail herself more frequently of the genius of Senator Al Franken and run hard with her party and against the GOP. A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey suggests I'm not so far off base. Some pertinent results:
  1. The Democratic Party is viewed positively by 33% of respondents and negatively by 44%.
  2. The Republican Party is viewed positively by 24%, negatively by 46%. That's the lowest positive the GOP has ever scored in this poll.
  3. The "Tea Party" (whatever respondents think that amorphous blob of voter crankiness may be) is viewed positively by 30%, negatively by 34%. But it also gets much bigger "Don't Know/Not Sure" ratings than the main two actual parties.
  4. Those preferring a Democrat-controlled Congress slightly outnumber those preferring a GOP-controlled Congress 43%–42%. Right before the last election when control of Congress changed hands, from GOP to Dem in 2006, the Dem-control preference was 52%–37%. Come on, people: we're not letting the GOP win the House on a slim margin like this! Fire up and vote!
  5. Here's a fun split: Those who want a Dem-run Congress are split just about equally between either primarily supporting President Obama and other Dems or opposing those nasty Republicans, 48%–47%.
  6. Those who want a GOP-run Congress have a hard time reflect the Republican "Party of No" status: 59% of them want to take Congress primarily because they oppose President Obama and the Dems; 35% are more fired up about their own GOP candidates.
Then again, Chuck Todd and the crew at MSNBC offer SHS this geographical caution about running too far left in old white South Dakota:

The GOP has a HUGE generic-ballot edge in the South (52%-31%), but it doesn’t lead anywhere else. In the Northeast, Dems have a 55%-30% edge; in the Midwest, they lead 49%-38%; and in the West, it’s 44%-43%. Yet do keep this caveat in mind: Many of the congressional districts Republicans are targeting outside of the South resemble some of those Southern districts they’re hoping to win back in November -- where you have whiter and older voters. Think Stephanie Herseth's seat in South Dakota; Tim Walz' seat in Minnesota; Leonard Boswell's seat in Iowa; and Ike Skelton's in Missouri [Chuck Todd et al., "Jet Blue Nation," NBC News: First Reads, 2010.08.12].

South Dakota: Just like Dixie!—I'm not sure I feel complimented.

Now the above numbers could be skewed by fortuitous sample: 20% of NBC/WSJ's respondents identified themselves as strong Dem, while only 13% identified as strong GOP. But conservatives outnumbered liberals 35% to 23%.

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