Yet again, the "Big GOP year in 2010" meme gets a ding, with Democrats leading Republicans in a generic ballot. A new Ipsos/McClatchy poll finds -- as I did earlier today -- that Democrats suck, while Republicans suck more.
Obama takes a hit, with 53% approving of his job performance and 43% disapproving, which means "a decline of three percentage points over the past month and twelve percentage points over the past six months, marking a new low since he took office." But he's still the most popular politician in Washington, hands down.
People don't like the economy (big surprise) and think congress blows (68% disapproval overall, 52% among Democratic voters).
Yet despite the criticism toward the White House and Congress, a plurality of Americans (48%) plan to vote Democratic in the 2010 midterm elections, while 41% say that they would vote for the Republican candidate. Just 2% would cast their vote for a third party candidate and 6% are unsure. Three percent do not plan to vote next November.
While I'm not extremely happy with a 7-point lead, I'll take it. Not only does this shoot a hole in the idea that Republicans are heading for a big win next year, but it also dents the "if the economy's bad, the party in power pays the price" line the media's been hawking lately. If the "price" Democrats have to pay for a bad economy is a 7-point lead, then I don't think that price is very expensive.
Still, a lot of time between now and November '10, a year is an eternity in politics, blah-blah-blah, insert favorite political cliche here. But it pays to realize that the first Tuesday of November has come and gone and we're officially in 2010 election cycle now. The Republican Party isn't exactly getting out of the gate in a very good position.
It's still the Democrats' race to lose. Although somehow, I don't find that entirely comforting.