PRINCETON, NJ -- Gallup's generic ballot for Congress among registered voters currently shows Republicans with 46% of the vote and Democrats with 43%, similar to the 46% to 46% tie reported a week ago. However, in Gallup's first estimates among likely voters, based on polling from Sept. 23-Oct. 3, Republicans have a double-digit advantage under two separate turnout scenarios.
These initial estimates are based on interviews with more than 3,000 national adults, including more than 2,700 registered voters, and more than 1,800 adults who demonstrate a high probability of voting this fall, based on their answers to Gallup's standard likely voter questions that probe current voting intentions and past voting behavior.
Long-time poll junkie readers will immediately notice the red alert here: this is the first time we've seen Gallup's likely voter models as opposed to their registered voter numbers, and both of the scenarios Gallup are showing us are predicting a total Republican asskicking of the Democrats.
Remember Nate Silver's likely voter model back in April?
So, for example, if the House popular vote were exactly tied, we'd expect the Democrats to lose "only" 30 seats on average, which would be enough for them to retain majority control. It would take about a 2.5 point loss in the popular vote for them to be as likely as not to lose control of the chamber. So Democrats probably do have a bit of a cushion: this is the good news for them.
Please note that the numbers Gallup are giving us are R+13 and R+18, which would correspond to about 82 seats under the first model and would actually be off the chart bad in the worst case scenario, but close to 100 seats.
In other words, Gallup is now predicting a complete annihilation in November. Republicans would end up with more seats in the House than the Democrats have now (253) and in that worst-case R+18 scenario, it would be significantly more (close to 280!)
I'm actually rather speechless, but if this doesn't motivate Dem voters to get out there are vote, faced with Republigeddon in the House, then I don't know what will...but if even a "high-turnout" likely voter model is showing the Republicans picking up 80 seats in the House...
Damn. That's sobering as hell. Your vote counts, people.