It's only February, and already a record number of Republican members of Congress have announced their retirement. According to The Atlantic, a total of 36 Republicans will not seek re-election to the House this year, as compared to just 17 Democrats.
A new CNN poll provides an explanation for why Republicans are abandoning the House in droves ahead of November's elections:
Perhaps they see the writing on the wall:
Where both parties stand ahead of midterms in new CNN/SSRS poll https://t.co/kbqhWQ4t2w— Morning Joe (@Morning Joe)1519729700.0
According to a new CNN poll, 54% of respondents said they intend to vote for the Democrat for Congress in November versus just 38% who said they will vote for the Republican.
This 16% advantage that Democrats have in the congressional generic ballot could signal real trouble for Republicans this November as they seek to hold onto their majorities in the House and Senate.
Democrats need to pick up just 24 seats in the House to win back the majority. Back in 2006, when Democrats won back the House in a wave election that saw them retake 31 seats, polling showed them with a generic ballot advantage of just 11.5 points (with the final result ending up at +8%.)
In addition, the new poll shows Democrats with a significant enthusiasm advantage over Republicans when it comes to voting in November. 52% of Registered Democrats said they are either extremely or very enthusiastic about voting for Congress this year, as opposed to just 40% of Registered Republicans who said the same.
Commentators were quick to note the significance of the results:
The new CNN poll puts Dems ahead on the generic House ballot by 16 points, 54-38: https://t.co/QH90BwOFDZ Worth n… https://t.co/51WUy1G47E— Greg Sargent (@Greg Sargent)1519668362.0
Dems grow advantage on generic ballot after slipping a few weeks ago CNN POLL Feb. 20-23 Choice for Congress De… https://t.co/u6d09smJ7F— Manu Raju (@Manu Raju)1519664917.0
That brings the average generic ballot back up to double digits after lagging last month:
Dam advantage on generic ballot back up to 10 points. Maybe tax cuts won't save the GOP after all? https://t.co/sogfa9BvIK— Paul Krugman (@Paul Krugman)1519672297.0
During Jan., Republicans cut Dems' generic ballot lead in half, from ~10% to ~5%. That's been erased in the last 3… https://t.co/N5nAGOAc5n— Dave Wasserman (@Dave Wasserman)1519670338.0
Dems are back to a 10-point lead in the 538 Generic Ballot tracker for the first time since January 14. https://t.co/4nwhcZwp0t— Josh Barro (@Josh Barro)1519668832.0
The results mirror a recent Quinnipiac poll released last week:
New Quinnipiac poll: Dems lead by 15 points in the generic House ballot matchup, 53-38. Ds lead among independent… https://t.co/ClhXik9MOD— Greg Sargent (@Greg Sargent)1519155374.0
Many used the news to rally Democrats to make the polling a reality on election day:
This may sound like great news but don't believe the polls, believe in yourself & register to vote today #VoteBlue… https://t.co/xwOOKIrQgh— JoeFaz™® VetsResistSquadron (@JoeFaz™® VetsResistSquadron)1519672341.0
@thehill Don’t believe any poll! Get out and vote for the Dem. Republicans love these polls for voter suppression.… https://t.co/dZ4KU7bAcu— JuLeS (@JuLeS)1519669928.0
#MondayMotivation #VoteThemOut2018 #Resistance #BlueWave2018 This is HUGE. Democrats are far ahead in the gen… https://t.co/Ni7091JQfo— Franny🌊RESISTS!! (@Franny🌊RESISTS!!)1519670770.0
@thehill I'll take any sign of hope, but we all must get out and vote. Help your neighbors get to the polls. https://t.co/WRQDpOngJf— Wendy Truong (@Wendy Truong)1519670265.0
Because Democrats remember what the polls were showing in 2016:
@thehill Sure they do https://t.co/WMDqEnk7vB— Peace Thru Strength ⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@Peace Thru Strength ⭐️⭐️⭐️)1519671139.0
So the message is clear:
@thehill Just because polls are saying one thing, do not become complacent. Unless we show up, this nightmare will continue.— R.B. *Space Ghost Resists* #WeAreThePatriots (@R.B. *Space Ghost Resists* #WeAreThePatriots)1519670675.0