Polls indicate a tight 2018 election
The news for Republicans this week hasn’t been good. But if the headlines augur a blue wave in November, the polling has been less consistent.If the numbers are even or if the Democrats only have a 4 point advantage in the generic ballot, the Republicans can still hold the House. It looks like the Republicans will actually gain seats in the Senate. The Republican candidate is now leading a Democrat incumbent in Missouri/
In the aftermath of Paul Manafort’s conviction and Michael Cohen’s plea deal, the polling outlook for Republicans in Wisconsin actually improved (though the surveys were conducted before the latest developments for these two former associates of President Trump).
Gov. Scott Walker has been trailing in his bid for a third term, after winning a recall election between his 2010 and 2014 races. Then the respected Marquette poll came out this week showing Walker tied with Democratic nominee Tony Evers at 46 percent apiece.
Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., is one of the ten Democratic senators running for re-election in a Trump-won state this year, but she hadn’t been considered especially vulnerable. She led by 17 points in a July NBC News/Marist poll and 14 in an Emerson survey later that month.
Marquette, however, had Baldwin ahead by just two points. She took 49 percent of the vote — just a tick under the 50 percent threshold of comfort for incumbents — to 47 percent for newly minted Republican nominee Leah Vukmir.
In New Jersey, Quinnipiac — a pollster that hasn’t produced a lot of encouraging results for Republicans this election cycle — found incumbent Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez leading by just 6 points and well below 50 percent. Menendez took 43 percent to Republican challenger Bob Hugin’s 37 percent.
Generic congressional ballot polling, which tests which party respondents prefer to see in control of Congress, has been inconsistent all year, though Democrats have generally led. Just this week, Rasmussen Reports has shown the two parties tied, Fox News has had Democrats leading by 11, Monmouth has had Democrats up by 5 and Reuters/Ipsos gives Democrats a 4-point lead.