US MIDTERM ELECTION PREVIEW UPDATE
On Election Eve, it appears as if we are on the cusp of a huge swing to the Republican Party with a win in the House all but certain and a majority in the Senate well on the cards.
Predictably, the economy has become the pre-eminent issue for voters, something the Democrats were desperately hoping to avoid. Combined with a cratering in Joe Biden’s approval rating, a traditional midterm result of a swing against the party of the sitting President is on the cards.
The return of Donald Trump to the hustings has done no harm to Republican candidates, particularly in Florida.
Americans go to the polls on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning Australian time.
SENATE MAJORITY & NUMBER OF SEATS
Betting on a Republican majority in the Senate has been off the map the last week and it is no surprise considering how much polling has shifted their way the last seven days as well as the prevailing sentiment that Joe Biden is doing a poor job and that the economy is the primary issue. Talk has essentially moved from whether the Republicans will win the Senate to how big their majority will be. It looks like 52 and 53 are now in play with 52 the best value bet.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES MAJORITY
This market is in no real dispute. On current polling, the Democrats are facing a devastating result in the House. Polling has tended to be off at recent elections but it has nearly exclusively understated support for the Republicans and overstated support for the Democrats. There are no sustainable paths for the Democrats to maintain control of the House outside of a miracle.
GEORGIA SENATE RACE
It is time to double down on the Republicans taking Georgia in the Senate. There is no seat in the country more likely to correlate Joe Biden’s disapproval with a seat win than Georgia. This week Georgia Bulldogs legend and Republican candidate Herschel Walker attacked Biden directly by claiming he is the “biggest threat to democracy”. In a week where Biden’s disapproval rating went north by nine points, Walker is going to the Senate.
NEW HAMPSHIRE SENATE RACE
Until 2017, New Hampshire had just four years of two Democratic senators so the state does not have a long history of being fully committed to the Democrats like many in New England. Senator Maggie Hassan is up for re-election and with just one term under her belt she is not overly rusted on. A Wick poll has this 50/50 while Hassan’s advantage in University of New Hampshire and an InsiderAdvantage polls is just one point and well within the margin of error. Hassan won by just 0.1 points in 2016.
OREGON GOVERNOR RACE
The last Republican Governor of Oregon left office in 1987 so it has been 35 straight years of Democratic control of the Oregon Governorship. It is an open race with Kate Brown not contesting but that is a positive for the Democrats considering she was the least popular governor in the country. Her successor Tina Kotek has a notable lead in a recent Emerson College poll. She is huge overs.
US MIDTERM ELECTION PREVIEW
The last week has seen a considerable shift in sentiment to the Republican Party, particularly in nationwide generic polls (+2 points in a CBS News polls, +4 points in a Data for Progress poll, +6 points in a Trafalgar Group poll) and Joe Biden approval polls (+12 disapproval CBS News, +8 disapproval Rasmussen, +11 disapproval Big Village). The latter is typically the biggest driver for midterm elections and spells disaster for the Democrats if it translates to a notable swing against them, particularly in the Senate.
Whether that shift continues following the violent attack on GOP Senate Leader Nancy Pelosi’s husband remains to be seen. Pelosi was Target No.1 in much of the GOP advertising and this further decline in the standard of US politics could see many swing voters move to the Democrats.
The spectre of Donald Trump also looms large with those who believe his rhetoric about the last election still asserting control over the Republic Party.
House Of Reps Republican Seats
Polling across the United States is primarily heading in one direction and that is towards the Republican Party. Current forecasts have averaged out Republicans locking in 214 seats with five more leans. Of the 11 tossups and 15 Democratic leans, it would be surprising if the Republicans did not pick up at least 11.
Arizona Senate Race
One of the big concerns with state-based polling in recent elections has been the notable levels Republican support has been understated. In a state like Arizona that has been shifting Republican with four of the last five Governors coming from the GOP. For the first time since 1953 Arizona has two Democratic Senators and it is hard to see that continuing. Mark Kelly has just two years in the job and polls are closing rapidly. This looks like a Republican gain.
Pennsylvania Senate Race
Dr Mehmet Oz, the Republican candidate, was widely believed to have won last week’s debate with Lt Governor John Fetterman. Polling has Fetterman marginally ahead but down two full percentage points while the state has typically severely overshot Democratic support in polling.
Michigan Governor Race
Michigan has not thrown out a one-term Governor since just after World War II but it is not inconceivable that Gretchen Whitmer will lose to former conservative commentator Tudor Dixon. Dixon has been gaining notably in the polls in recent weeks from a gap of 10.5% in September to just 5%. Given how recent polls have skewed, the value is with the Republican candidate.