If Mike Oliverio knocks off Alan Mollohan in West Virginia tonight it will reflect a trend that hasn't drawn a whole lot of attention- there are just as many Democrats unhappy with their party because they think it's too liberal as because it's too conservative.
Democratic unrest from the left draws considerably more attention but our national survey in March found that 20% of Democrats thought the party in Congress was too liberal, almost identical to the 23% who said they thought it was too conservative. And it seems pretty safe to say that in a state like West Virginia there are a lot more Democrats who think the party needs to move to the right than think it needs to move to the left.
Democratic voters who think their party's too liberal may not get a ton of press coverage, but they could play a very big role in this fall's election. On our most recent national generic ballot polling only 4% of Republican voters were planning to cross over in November, but 9% of Democrats said they were going to. With independents leaning heavily toward the GOP, there will need to be a significant party id advantage for Democrats in who votes this fall to overcome those two trends and with the low levels of excitement we've seen from the party's voters so far this year that doesn't seem too likely.
Clearly Mollohan has problems beyond his voting record that are making this a competitive race, but it's still going to be an interesting test case of whether there are places this year where a Democrat can win the primary by explicitly running to the right as Oliverio has