Thursday, April 22, 2010

GOP strong in NH House races

It's a given that Republicans will pick up a lot of Democratic held Congressional seats in districts won by John McCain this year. What will decide whether the GOP can take control of the House is its ability to win ones where Barack Obama was victorious as well. And it appears to have a very good chance to do so in both of New Hampshire's districts.

Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter has an upside down approval with 50% of voters disapproving of her job performance to just 41% giving her good marks. Hers is the more conservative of the state's districts and she's probably not helped by Obama's negative 45/49 approval spread or the 52/42 opposition to the health care bill there.

In a hypothetical match up with Frank Guinta, Shea-Porter trails 46-45. It has little to do with Guinta- 52% of voters in the district don't know enough about him to have an opinion and it's far from inevitable that he will be the GOP nominee. But he nevertheless leads 45-42 among independents and takes 9% of Democrats to Shea-Porter's 7% of Republicans. Shea-Porter has not really done any bipartisan bridge building so that puts her fate in the hands of independents and that will make it tough for her this fall with independents everywhere leaning toward the GOP. This one looks like a tossup.

If the best known candidates for Paul Hodes' open seat win their party nominations Republicans will be heavily favored to take it back. Former Congressman Charlie Bass leads 2002 Democratic nominee Katrina Swett 47-32. Those numbers are pretty comparable to what happened when they faced off the first time and Bass won 57-41, not a huge surprise given that this is the first year where New Hampshire Republicans have much cause for optimism since that 2002 election.

Although she is the best known candidate for now because of her family name and prior run, Democrats may be better off nominating someone other than Swett. 29% of voters in the district have an unfavorable opinion of her to only 19% who view her positively. Bass isn't amazingly popular either with 35% of voters holding a favorable opinion of him to 34% with a negative one. Still he leads Swett 49-26 with independents and gets 18% of the Democratic vote against her so if that's how the race shapes up the GOP will be in a very strong position.

If Republicans can win these sorts of districts around the country in the fall, they will probably take back the majority. In New Hampshire anyway, they appear to be in a strong position to do so.

Full results here


Unknown said...

You've chosen to put your polls on line and put your crosstabs. My compliments. You do so without explaining your weighting. You have the two districts as 32D/30R/38I and 34D/30R/36I.

In 2004 NH was 25D/33R/43I. In 2008 NH was 29D/27R/33I. 2004 was relatively neutral. So it'll probably be more Republican than that. Yet you're more Democratic than 2008.

You did the same thing in North Carolina. You gave the Dems 47% and a 12 point advantage. In 2004 the Democrats got 39% and had a 1 point disadvantage. In 2008 they had 42% and an 11 point advantage.

Your weighting indicates you think this year will be more Democratic than 2008. You're the only one who thinks this.

Tom Jensen said...

We don't weight our polls for party.

wt said...

Great work by PPP.

Anonymous said...

Some people, need to get a clue!! Tom, awesome work! I am glad that we have your firm here in NC, for it is the most accurate! Keep it up!

Unknown said...

I'm certainly no pollster and you get paid to do this but I don't think presents an accurate poll. 18-29 voters tend to be undercounted due to their use of cell phones. You have 10% 18-29. That's a reasonable drop for a mid-term, although it is a big one.

Do you take the first 647 1st District likely voters you get? If you asked age, gender, and party before the likely voter screen you would actually get your own demographics that you could weight based on that. Doing it this way opens up your polls for critique like mine and likely sites like 538.

You do deserve compliments by including your in-tabs. People like me can recalculate your poll based on what I think the electorate will be.

Anonymous said...

Polls don't mean much in NH-01, as Shea-Porter came literally out of nowhere to defeat "the chosen" Democrat in the primary in 06, and then went on to win with polls not even showing her on the radar 2 months before the General Election. The DCCC ignored Carol until 5 days before the election.

Dynamics such as employment and overall economic health will be important to the '10 final result. But it's Shea-Porter's organizational team that is almost unique in modern politics, and no Republican can deal with it. Simply throwing money cannot beat it.

Frank Guinta has some serious baggage issues that people in NH are becoming aware of. Let's just say that corrupt Republicans are not welcome in NH.

Polls are meaningless in NH-01.
Watch, as Shea-Porter again defies the 'conventional wisdom' of the corporate media narrative.

In NH-02, Katrina Swett has her own set of serious 'centrist' baggage [read Joe Lieberman 'wing' of the Democratic Party] which is counter to common sense and the progressive aspect of that District. She is not the best the choice for Democrats. You've at least got that part correct.

Whomever the Democratic nominee is, they just have wait for Charlie Bass to put his foot in his mouth. Charlie's as constant as the North Star. He'll do it [again], and that will be end of his chances [again].

Anonymous said...

The more people find out about Guinta and his almost Progressive voting record in the NH house, the more CSP will rise in the polls. I would think Bestani will benefit by Guinta's slide, but Carol hasn't even begun her campaign yet. Financially, individual contributions coupled with PAC's and the support of SEIU, NEA and the trade unions puts her in a good position. What folks fail to realize, the the State of New Hampshire is the largest employer in the State of New Hampshire. All those state employees, hmmmm.....

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