NYT: No Sign Yet of Republican 'Wave' Election

Tuesday, 22 Jul 2014 09:58 AM

By Melanie Batley

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There are no signs so far that the 2014 midterm elections will be a "wave election" for Republicans like the party enjoyed in 2010, The New York Times reported.

At the same time, the Times said, there are good reasons to suggest a wave for the GOP is still on the horizon. Specifically, the president's party typically suffers significant losses during off-year elections; President Barack Obama's popularity is hovering in the low 40 percent range; the Obamacare rollout was a disaster; and the midterm map favors the GOP with the seats of a number of Senate Democrats up for grabs.

"The anti-Democratic wave might still arrive. But with three and a half months to go until November's elections, the promised Republican momentum has yet to materialize," wrote Nate Cohn of the Times.

Cohn added that there are few polls that clearly indicate whether voters would prefer Democrats or Republicans to control Congress and that Democrats appear to have a slight edge among registered voters.

Nevertheless, according to the Times, in past wave elections, the GOP did not begin to gain a noticeable advantage on the generic ballot or in competitive races until August.

"As July turns to August, the GOP is now on the clock. If there is to be a wave this November, the signs of a shift toward the GOP ought to start to show up, somewhere, soon. Every day that goes by without a shift toward the GOP increases the odds that there will not be a wave at all," Cohn wrote.

Cohn also said that Democrats may be able to avoid a wave because the Republican Party is much more unpopular today than it was in 2010. Surveys on Obama's favorability ratings may also not be entirely accurate. And while the GOP expected to ride on the unpopularity of Obamacare, the issue seems to have been eclipsed by other items in the news.

Republicans will have a good chance of winning control of the Senate regardless of a wave, Cohn said, but without victories in Democratic-tilting states, the election should not be considered a major victory for the GOP.

"The Republicans don't need more evidence of their ability to win with low Democratic turnout in states like Louisiana and Alaska heading into 2016. Fortunately for the GOP, there are still more than three months to go," Cohn concluded.

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