-I think the scariest statistic for Democrats in our Illinois poll this week was the generic Congressional ballot- a 44-44 tie. That seems like it should be impossible in such a strongly Democratic state but 94% of Republicans are committed to voting for their party while only 83% of Democrats say the same for theirs and independents are going toward the GOP by a 41-32 margin as well. Other recent polls we did found Democrats trailing on the generic ballot in Michigan by 7 points, in Ohio by 6 points, and in Pennsylvania by 9 points. It's staggering to think about how many House seats the party could lose in the Midwest alone.
-One politician whose popularity really impresses me is Dick Durbin. He's one of the few Senators we've found with a 50% or better approval rating at any time this year (our August Illinois poll) and was at 46% on our survey there this week, still well ahead of the curve in this political climate. What makes Durbin's numbers remarkable is not really how they compare to Senators in other states but how they compare to other politicians in the state. 46% might not sound great but when you compare it to 24% for Pat Quinn, 17% for Roland Burris, and the horrid favorabilities for Alexi Giannoulias, Mark Kirk, and Bill Brady he comes out looking amazingly popular in comparison.
We'll have Connecticut, Colorado, and New York polls next week- have a great weekend!