For some time now we have been trying to convince everyone that 2010 will be just like 1994 only more so. Sean Trende at Real Clear Politics has an article called How Bad Could 2010 Really Get For Democrats? His answer is that it could be not only as bad as 1994 but even as bad as 1938. While we are not ready to say that the Republicans will pick up 79 seats like they did in 1938 yet, we have been saying all this year that it would be well over the 51 seats they gained in 1994. Right now we are projecting a 66 seat pick-up with a loss of two seats for a net gain of 64 seats. That puts us halfway between the 1994 and 1938 in terms of seats gained by the Republicans.
Real Clear Politics was projecting that the Republicans will pick up 18 seats with a decent chance at 29 more and that was more than twice as many as any other analyst except for our own. We can understand their being cautious at this point because as Sean points out, a "V"-shaped recovery might cause their projections to be correct. Right after that article appeared, they shifted 4 more seats to the Republicans for a total of 22 and added 3 more to the toss-up group for a total of 32. That is getting them to 54 seats seriously in play with the Republicans losing 2 seats for a net gain of 52 if all the toss-ups go Republican. They also shifted shifted a net 10 likely Democrat seats to leans Democrat.
As we pointed out in Seeing What you Want to See, all the other analysts were totally biased in favor of the Republicans. Apparently one of them read Sean's article and/or our own critique and began making some changes in favor of the Republicans. The Rothenberg Political Report shifted 44 seats to a more favorable rating for the Republicans. Since that report was by far the most biased in favor of the Democrats, this change was long overdue. He now gives the Republicans 17 seats with another 13 Democrat seats in the toss-up category. While still quite low, this does give Stu Rothenberg some cedibility when has had none before.
The title of the most biased then shifted to Congressional Quarterly Politics which responded by shifting one of the four measly seats they were willing to give to the Republicans to the toss-up group (KS-3). The only reason they were willing to give even the original four to the Republicans is because the Democrat is not running for reelection. They had only 20 seats in the toss-up group so now they have 21. Their ratings can no longer be given any credibility.
The next most biased was and still is the Cook Political Report. They are still showing the Republicans gaining a whole six seats while losing 2. All of these are open because the Democrat is not seeking reelection. Charlie Cook has no pure toss-up category but he does list 26 Democrat seats in the Democrat toss-up category. That is up 3 seats from his last change. Yet Charlie is on record as saying that the Republicans will most likely gain control of the House as we discussed in Charlie, You Have Us Confused. It is hard to give Charlie any credibility any more.
Even now, there are still some ratings by all the other analysts that making no sense whatsoever. Below is a table of those ratings with information that points out how ridiculous they are. The * on the 2008 for NY-20 is because that margin was for Senator Gillibrand when she was elected to the House. Scott Murphy was elected to replace her in a special election in which he won by 0.45%. The Republicans are way ahead in voter registration but this district will go Democrat in a banner Republican year?
Notice that in every case, there was a Republican incumbent in 2002 by good margins. In 14 out of 16 cases there was one in 2004. Where the Republican lost, it was by less than 4%. In 7 cases, Republicans even survived the 2006 bloodbath and now these districts will stay Democrat? Without Obama on the ballot to bring out black and under 30 voters like he did in 2008, a lot of Democrat incumbents are in serious trouble so high margins in 2008 but not in 2006 do not mean much now.
|Rank||Seat||Democrat||Poll||Margin 08||Margin 06||Margin 04||Margin 02||Rep Reg%||Dem Reg%||Oth Reg%||Obama||Ours||CQ Pol||Cook||Rothbrg||RCP|
|3||NY-20||Scott Murphy||R+9||*24.26||6.20||-32.13||-49.33||41.13||26.98||31.89||3.00||Likely R||Likely D||Likely D||D favored||Leans D|
|8||PA-3||Kathy Dahlkemper||2.47 ||-11.57 ||-20.16 ||-55.36 ||-27 votes || Likely R ||Leans D ||Likely D ||D favored ||Toss up |
|23 ||NJ-3||John Adler ||3.31 ||-17.37 ||-28.78 ||-31.10 ||5.38 ||Leans R ||Leans D ||Leans D ||Leans D ||Leans D |
|26 ||WI-8 ||Steve Kagen ||8.10 ||2.14 ||-40.32 ||-48.69 ||8.47 ||Leans R ||Leans D ||Leans D ||D favored ||Safe D |
|27 ||GA-12||John Barrow ||32.00 ||0.61 ||3.62 ||-10.38 ||8.84||Leans R||Likely D ||Likely D ||Safe D ||Likely D |
|28 ||OH-16 ||John Boccieri||R+11||10.73 ||-16.68 ||-33.09 ||-37.74 ||-2.61 ||Leans R||Likely D ||Leans D ||Leans D ||Toss up |
|32 ||PA-10 ||Christopher Carney ||12.66 ||5.89||-85.68||-85.81||-8.43||Leans R ||Leans D ||Leans D||D favored ||Leans D |
|35||MI-9||Gary Peters ||9.45||-5.35||-18.91||-18.22||12.96||R toss up ||Likely D ||Safe D ||Safe D ||Leans D |
|37||CA-11 ||Jerry McNerney ||10.55||-6.53||-22.46||-20.63||39.37||39.15||21.48||9.33||R toss up ||Leans D ||Leans D ||D favored ||Toss up |
|39 ||IL-11 ||Debbie Halvorson ||R+6||23.92||-10.19||-17.35||-28.64 ||8.18||R toss up ||Likely D ||Leans D ||D favored ||Toss up |
|49 ||FL-22 ||Ron Klein ||9.34 ||3.76 ||-27.49 ||-22.41 ||37.68||36.98 ||25.34 ||4.04||R toss up ||Safe D ||Likely D ||D favored ||Toss up |
|57 ||NY-25 ||Dan Maffei ||12.94 ||-1.57 ||-80.78 ||-45.65 ||34.37 ||34.29 ||28.34 ||13.12 ||R toss up ||Likely D||Likely D ||Safe D ||Likely D |
|60 ||GA-8 ||Jim Marshall ||14.49 ||1.10 ||-51.10 ||-56.66 ||-13.36 ||R toss up ||Likely D ||Likely D ||Safe D ||Likely D |
|63 ||IL-8 ||Melissa Bean ||Tie||21.44 ||6.89 ||3.40 ||-14.86 ||12.88 ||R toss up ||Safe D ||Likely D ||Safe D ||Leans D |
|66||PA-4 ||Jason Altmire ||R+9||11.72 ||3.86 ||-27.18 ||-29.11 ||-10.45 ||R toss up ||Likely D ||Likely D ||Leans D ||Leans D |