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Analysis: Dems unlikely to retake House even if Trump polling collapses further

Analysis: Dems unlikely to retake House even if Trump polling collapses further

There are varying levels of horrible results for conservatives in the upcoming election.

Based on current polling, it certainly looks like Hillary will be the next president. You can argue whether that is better or worse than the alternative for conservatives, but there is no serious argument that losing either the House or the Senate is horrible. In the case of the Senate, it will pave the way for Hillary to push through disastrous judicial nominations. And yes, expect Majority Leader Schumer to raise the nuclear option to the Supreme Court level if Democrats control the Senate by even a single (tie-breaking) vote. The Senate could go either way at present polling.

But the House is what stands between conservatives and the political abyss. Think of where we would be if in the first two years of his presidency, when Obama controlled both houses of Congress, he had focused on passing a wide-ranging legislative agenda rather than focusing on Obamacare. All of the executive orders and actions that have been questioned by the courts and can be reversed by the next president would have the force of legislation.

Assuming Hillary is the next president and wins in a landslide, Republican control of the House may be the last line of defense.

As of this writing, that line of defense is likely to hold even if there is a further implosion of Trump’s top-of-the-ticket polling. So reports Dave Wasserman at The Cook Political Report, Is the House in Play? What We Know Now:

Ever since last Friday’s Access Hollywood bombshell, Speaker Paul Ryan has treated Trump’s campaign as a sinking ship and has sounded an alarm to donors to shift resources towards saving the majority. Meanwhile, we have been inundated with questions about whether the majority is now in play. We’ve long been skeptical, but purposefully waited a few days to gather as much fresh data as possible before offering our view.

A week later, Donald Trump’s behavior towards women continues to consume the news. But there’s little evidence of a wholesale shift in the House landscape. The prospect that GOP voters staying home clearly increases the party’s downside risk, but neither side’s polling suggests the “bottom dropping out” for congressional Republicans.

Democrats need a 30 seat gain to retake the House, but that’s very difficult to do when there are only37 competitive races — including six already held by Democrats. Today, even if they won all 6 seats in Lean Democratic and all 18 seats in Toss Up, they would still need to win 11 of 13 races in Lean Republican to win the majority. By the time the Mark Foley scandal broke in late September 2006, the hill for Democrats was much less steep.

*   *    *

Bottom line: A week ago we were about to revise our House outlook of a 5 to 20 seat Democratic gain downward because it looked like Republicans were on track to keep their losses to single digits. Trump’s “unshackled” antics could hurt GOP turnout and substantially increase the odds Democrats score a gain in the 10 to 20 seat range. But the playing field remains narrow, and 30 seats is still a reach today.

Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball website reaches a similar conclusion:

So our current House ratings show 228 seats Safe, Likely, or Leaning Republican, 193 Safe/Likely/Leaning Democratic, and 14 Toss-ups. Splitting the Toss-ups down the middle seven to seven would make the House 235-200 Republican, or a net gain of 12 for the Democrats. We’ve consistently suggested a Democratic gain in the 10-15 range, and that’s where we remain as we await more information on whether Trump is truly dragging down House Republicans or not.

Paul Ryan’s call for Republican congressional members to do whatever it takes vis-a-vis Trump to keep their seats in Republican hands makes sense in this environment. There is no one nationwide strategy, rather, it’s district-by-district where conditions will vary.

One thing that could tear down this House firewall is if Trump decides to burn the land by deliberately going after House Republicans and urging his voters to defect. To do so, however, would be an admission by Trump that he expects to lose.


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I hold out hope that the enthusiasm gap will even the playing field.

+ I don’t care so much about Trump winning so much as I want to see MSM lose.

Here in North Carolina – Silicon Valley dollars are pouring in from Google and Apple and Amazon.

They won’t locate here because of HB2. But, they are happy to by our Senators and Congressmen.

Screw them.

“One thing that could tear down this House firewall is if Trump decides to burn the land by deliberately going after House Republicans and urging his voters to defect. To do so, however, would be an admission by Trump that he expects to lose.”

He’s pretty much there in full gonzo mode, Prof.

From asserting that Ryan is in some kind of devil’s bargain with Hellary in full Alex Jones crazy…

to a new conspiracy theory about bankers (which a lot of his cultists will read as Jews)…

or maybe its Jewish Mexican bankers (I can’t keep up)…

to his bs about a “rigged system” that undercuts our democratic systems (and, no, he’s not talking about just the press, which we all agree on)…

he’s doing the ground-work for a full scorched earth blame-it-on-everything-but-me tour.

People are leaving the Pro-Choice Church. The liberal culture must be tempered by a religious/moral philosophy that is internally, externally, and mutually consistent. The class diversitists (i.e. institutional racism, sexism) need to be sent back. The social justice adventurists (e.g. progressive wars) need to be shutdown. The baby trials must end. The debasement of human life for wealth, pleasure, leisure, and narcissistic indulgence… and democratic leverage is a price too high.

I am not sure Trump’s polling is really collapsing, other than in polls run by democrats and their allies in the media, which grossly oversample democrats, and whose purpose is to form public opinion, not measure it.

Republican control of the House may be the last line of defense.

In other words, no defense at all.

The rise of Trump is a symptom of the political failure of Conservatism. Had Conservatism not consistently let us down by failing to offer reliably Conservative candidates, rather than leopards who change their spots as soon as elected, Trump would have been the answer to the question nobody actually asked.

But conservatives persist with the fantasy that the Republican party is, in any useful sense, conservative. And so they continue to lose. They lose when Democrats are elected, they lose when Republicans are elected. All from a failure to recognize the nature of the battlefield.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to tom swift. | October 14, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    The GOPe fails to provide conservative candidates and it’s the fault of…. conservatism? Yikes.

    Agreed. If the Dems control the Senate by even one vote, it doesn’t matter what the House sends their way. Harry Reid proved it. Even if we wind up with a 50/50 split and Hillary in office, the VEEP is the tiebreaker, and you can expect a flood of 51/50 votes.

    In short, whatever bills the House sends to the Senate will be hollowed out and completely replaced by pre-written Senate dem text, rammed through, and sent to the House/Senate conference, which has a remarkable history of caving to any Democrat influence. And when the resulting bill hits the House, the Republicans will cave, as always.

    How does Tom’s analysis get 8 down votes? Seriously? It’s an accurate and pretty tame take on events. Are their paid posters here, framing a narrative? Or is Legal Insurrection’s commentariate this out of touch with reality?

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | October 14, 2016 at 3:19 pm

Trump has been subtly trying to appeal to Bernie voters his entire campaign. I’m pretty sure that’s why he attacked Nikki Haley, Scott Walker, and Susana Martinez in the primaries and lost his mind attacking GWB in SC during the primaries. He was trying to position himself as not a “real” Republican to attract Bernie voters, so that after Hillary won the nomination they’d come to him. The problem is that Hillary did a great job consolidating Bernie support at the convention. According to a Pew poll I saw about two weeks after the Dem convention, 85% of Bernie supporters said they were going to vote for Hillary, only 9% for Trump.

But Trump hasn’t given up on the Bernie voters. He referenced Bernie at least twice in the last debate, saying Bernie was right to call Hillary’s judgment into question. He is trying to get them to shift their support to him and/or to make them so disgusted by Hillary that they stay home.

The snippets I’ve seen of his rallies the past couple of days he sounds more like a Bernie populist than a traditional Republican. I doubt he convinces many more of the Bernites to vote for him and he very well may be alienating traditional Republicans who may decide not to show up to vote the down ballot races. He has said he doesn’t care about the Senate or House. He’s doing what he always does and is doing what is right for him.

As if a GOP House wouldn’t assume their typical subservient position – e.g., on their knees begging the Democrats and the Establishment media to love them while promising to do everything their masters desire.

The GOP is the typical abused spouse – beaten until they are bleeding and unconscious on the floor, then apologizing profusely and begging for forgiveness when they awaken.

The GOP will – once again – be the toilet paper in the Democrat outhouse…and be pissed at us for not appreciating them for all they do for us.

Whistling past the graveyard.

Trump’s attack is minor compared to the Trump supporters, many who are saying “finally he’s doing it”. Since before the debate Trump supporters have been distributing lists of sitting politicians un-endorsing Trump.A petition has been started to remove Ryan.

You seem to think that Trump supporters are stupid. Think again.
Put the blame where it rests. On the candidates themselves.

Meanwhile ignore the fact #nextFakeTrumpVictim has been trending on twitter.

Pretend that this hasn’t been going on for a long time. Pretend that you altRINOs didn’t encourage people to vote in a primary who are never going to vote for him in a general, for Thad Cochran.

Pretend this isn’t a mess created by Tom Delay, Karl Rowe, Tom Donohue, Lisa Murkowskie, the Bushiaa, Romney and McCain.

What’s more pretend that a Republican House is going to do anymore to stop Hillary then a Republican House has done to stop Obama

Finally pretend that a bunch of corrupt Republican politicians are going to remove the corruption in Washington.

    RodFC in reply to RodFC. | October 14, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    PS Has that non Sasse Senator from Nebraska unreendorsed Trump after she unendorsed Trump after she endorsed Trump yet?

    Merlin in reply to RodFC. | October 14, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Pretend that no matter how many lists you keep you still don’t need the rest of the party to vote for the Republican nominee. Number, numbers, numbers.

      RodFC in reply to Merlin. | October 14, 2016 at 6:37 pm

      Pretend that no matter how much you lie to and degrade the Hobbits and tell them they have to vote for you because “Obama/Hillary/ yada yada” is much worse, you don’t need their votes.

      If things are as they are being painted ( which I do not completely buy ) how is that working out?

    I find this argument that the GOP has “done nothing” to stop Obama singularly objectionable. While they haven’t used the power of the purse (the main power they have), the Republicans taking the House in 2010 and then the Senate in 2014 has mattered a great deal in terms of what has NOT happened that Obama and the Dems would have loved to have enacted.

    Obama knows they can’t do a whole lot to stop his EOs; the GOP would need supermajorities to override a veto, convict on an impeachment, etc. Since they don’t have that, they have to oppose him in other ways that aren’t as dramatic but that have proven rather effective.

    After all, if Obama had his way and the Dem supermajorites he had in ’09 had continued, we would have single-payer health care, we’d be even further in debt with more “green” energy boondoggles, we’d have poured good money after bad in “infrastructure” stimulus disasters (shovel-ready jobs are there, we just need to throw more money at it!), we’d have extremely strict gun laws that would have to go to the Supremes to be stopped, we’d have “free” college and guaranteed “jobs,” we’d have a million Syrian refugees flooding the country, we’d have laws regulating speech against Muslims, we’d have cars that record our every move for taxation purposes, we’d have rolling blackouts across the nation to “save” energy, we’d have something ten times worse than Common Core, and we’d have every other disastrous socialist craziness they’ve been longing for.

    As much as I wish the GOP would do more and as much as I loathe the GOPe, when I think about it, they’ve stood in the way of pure disaster.

      Yeah yeah. What you’re argument comes down to is be thankful that you are eating McDonalds’ [1] food instead of shit .

      Not an option. You gave us a big pile of candidates. A crude nonpolitician beat them all biggest the were the worse pile of stinking fetid dung around. You want us to support your candidates, give us something that can be supported. Not some “war hero” who can’t resist selling out war heros and the party he claims to represent. Not some guy who made his millions putting other people out of work. Not some guy who thinks he’s the second coming of Christ. Until you do that don’t complain that we won’t vote for these guys.

      Saruman is not an option to Sauron.

      [1]No actual insult to McDonalds. The few times I eat there I find the food good, but you do get my point.

        PaulM in reply to RodFC. | October 15, 2016 at 9:44 am

        RodFC wrote, “Saruman is not an option to Sauron.”

        I thought you were a Trump supporter.

        “Saruman is not an option to Sauron,” sounds more like something a NeverTrump would say. In fact, doesn’t that pretty much sum up the NeverTrump position?

Don’t believe the polls

Henry Hawkins | October 14, 2016 at 5:12 pm

Trump is holding his base and has many GOP less-than-supportive voters holding their noses to vote for Trump, but he is losing the plurality of independents badly, without whom he cannot win. Registered Dems = approx 27%, registered GOP = approx 25%, independent/unaffiliated = 48%. The winner has to take not just a majority of tne indies, but a large majority. Romney won the indies, just not by near enough to win the election in 2012.

The Senate doesn’t matter anyway.

Mitch ‘The Democrat’s Bitch’ McConnell will still do whatever Hillary wants. She’ll get any radical liberal she wants on the court because Republicans don’t have the balls to actually do anything about it.

It is possible that the Trump voters will kick the GOP candidates on the down ticket to the curb, IF the GOP continues to attack their Presidential nominee. These voters will still be going to the polls to vote for the anti-establishment Presidential candidate, DJT. But, they may very well decide not to vote for Republican candidates, in other races, who they perceive to be working contrary to their interests. This will have nothing to do with Trump and everything to do with the RNC and other Republican candidates.

One has to remember that this is a contest between the Establishment and a very large anti-establishment voting block. And, the Establishment sees most of the Republican and Democrat candidates as their allies.

    “The GOP continues to attack their nominee “? “Their”? That takes some guts.
    There is nothing Republican or conservative or even decent about Trump. All resemblances between conservatism and altRight are purely coincidental. You foisted your candidate on the GOP even though we kept telling you that there is no way we will vote for him. Now you turn around and call us traitors? GOP old-timers are establishment?

Anyone who thinks for a NY minute that a new Republican controlled House will oppose a President Hillary any more than they actually opposed a President Obama has either not been paying attention the last 16 years or is a raving lunatic.

” ‘The GOP continues to attack their nominee ‘? ‘Their’? That takes some guts.There is nothing Republican or conservative or even decent about Trump.”

Yes. THEIR nominee. That was the contract – we hold primaries, the overall winner of those primaries is the party’s nominee for office. My guys lost (Walker & Cruz) so we do what we have ALWAYS done, we accept the winner, hold our nose and get behind him.

Except for some of you, you have “principles”

“You foisted your candidate on the GOP even though we kept telling you that there is no way we will vote for him. Now you turn around and call us traitors?”

Foisted? Our choices got their butts handed to them. Trump won. And yes, you are traitors. Pretending that we “forced” you to become traitors doesn’t play. It’s also intellectually dishonest. And that’s a pattern I’ve noticed with your writings here.

You are a registered Republican. Trump’s party IS your party. Now go back to pretending you are acting on some “principle” as you hand the Executive Branch over to Hillary.