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Political Insiders Poll: Insiders Increasingly Predict GOP House and Senate in 2012 Political Insiders Poll: Insiders Increasingly Predict GOP House and S...

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Political Insiders Poll: Insiders Increasingly Predict GOP House and Senate in 2012

Political Insiders Poll: Insiders Increasingly Predict GOP House and Senate in 2012

On a scale of 0 (no chance) to 10 (virtual certainty), how likely are the Republicans to take over the Senate next November?

Democrats (102 votes)

Sept. 2011

 

Average: 5.6
Low (0-3): 11%
Moderate (4-6): 61%
High (7-10): 30%


May 2011

 

Average: 5.0
Low (0-3): 20%
Moderate (4-6): 59%
High (7-10): 21%

 

Low (0-3)

“If the populace has had enough of infighting and Republican tea party do-nothings, and if the Democrats do a better job of communicating their plans, the chances decline. A lot is riding on the economy improving and the jobless rate declining before the election.”

 

Moderate (4-6)

“The Republicans have branding problems, and I think that after we have the jobs plan, deficit super committee, and 2012 budget fights, they will be weakened and provide a strong contrast for Dems.”

“Democrats have enough support to hold on, and Republicans are on the wrong side of ‘don’t tax the rich.’ ”

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“The obvious pickups haven’t materialized for the Republicans yet.”

“It is likely that a number of Democratic senators will be pulled over the finish line by the anti-Perry turnout of the Democratic base.”

“Should be higher, but recruiting issues and fractious primaries weigh Republicans down.”

“Landscape is very difficult for Dems, and in order for prospects to change, the president’s standing must improve.”

“Democrats have twice as many seats up as the Republicans. In an anti-incumbent year that spells danger for Democrats.”

“Unless the economy takes a decided turn for the better, 2012 will be a bleak year for Democrats, with a loss of the Senate the last domino to fall.”

High (7-10)

“With Obama running against Congress, these members in tough states are going to be toast. Think Claire McCaskill.”

“Volatile electorate plus twice as many Dem seats up in 2012 equals a good chance for R’s to win the Senate. Best hope is that the R’s will nominate tea party extremists like they did in 2010; that will prevent a takeover.”

“Too many tough states, too many tough races, too many incumbents to defend.”

“Democrats did not recruit well, and right now they have an election that is nationalized with an economic tsunami that they cannot individually control.”

“The worst map [for Democrats] since Columbus called the Azores ‘India.’ ”

 

On a scale of 0 (no chance) to 10 (virtual certainty), how likely are the Republicans to take over the Senate next November?

Republicans (111 votes)

Sept. 2011

Average: 7.4
Low (0-3): 1%
Moderate (4-6): 22%
High (7-10): 79%

 

May 2011

Average: 6.7
Low (0-3): 2%
Moderate (4-6): 41%
High (7-10): 57%

 

Moderate (4-6)

“[George] Allen is iffy in Virginia, and [Bill] Nelson will retain his seat in Florida. To get the majority, we need to pull an upset somewhere—maybe Ohio.”

“This is getting more within reach the more the Obama drag on the ticket looms. The enthusiasm gap is getting to be a real concern for the Dems.”

“If Perry is the nominee, the chance of success drops to 3 or 4.”

High (7-10)

“The math favors the Republicans, but so does the geography of the tough seats in a presidential year.”

“Obama is going to wage a war against Congress. That will put a lot of red-state Democrats in an untenable position.”

“This has less to do with the current bad environment for the Dems than it does with the great playing field. North Dakota, Missouri, Nebraska, and Montana seem set up perfectly.”

“Republicans badly underperformed in 2000 Senate elections and then absurdly underperformed in 2006. A simple regression to the mean would produce a GOP majority. Add in the president’s unpopularity, and it looks very good.”

“The swing in 2006 brought in many red-state Democrats who will have a tough time defending their seats in an anti-Democratic year.”

“Virtually all of the vulnerability is on the Democratic side this cycle. Of 10 to 12 competitive races, two are GOP seats, and we only need to pick up four.”

This article appears in the September 24, 2011 edition of National Journal Magazine.

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