Democratic Jump in Generic Ballot Poll

Democrats have opened up a 6 point lead in the Gallup generic ballot tracking poll, their first statistically significant lead of the cycle.

The latest Gallup poll shows an increase in the gap between Democrats and Republicans in the generic ballot poll to 6%.

Now, I am skeptical of the exact usefulness of the generic ballot poll method, given that it does not relate directly to how people vote (i.e., we vote for candidates in districts, not just for a party).

Further, the jump is only two points up for the Dems and three points down for the Reps—not exactly epic stuff, but not nothing, either:

The Democrats’ six-point advantage in Gallup Daily interviewing from July 12-18 represents the first statistically significant lead for that party’s candidates since Gallup began weekly tracking of this measure in March.

In any event, it is interesting.  One wonders if the Republican’s ploy regarding unemployment benefits is backfiring a bit.

Also interesting:  Republicans appear quite jazzed to vote:

Simultaneous with increased support for Democratic congressional candidates, Gallup polling last week found Republican voters expressing significantly more enthusiasm about voting in the 2010 midterms. The 51% of Republicans saying they are “very enthusiastic” about voting this fall is up from 40% the week prior, and is the highest since early April — shortly after passage of healthcare reform. Democratic enthusiasm is unchanged, at 28%.

UPDATE (James Joyner):  It’s worth noting that Gallup is tracking “adults” here which, as noted this morning, is the most Democrat-friendly sample.   Republicans do better among “registered voters” and much better among “likely voters.”

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2010, Public Opinion Polls, US Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor of Political Science and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Michael says:

    Or maybe the poll is just wrong?

  2. Idiot says:

    Have you checked the sampling to see if there is a consistency in who was polled?

  3. Michael says:

    Also this was a poll of Adults not Registared Voters. Throw it in the garbage. I wonder who got to Gallup?

  4. Trumwill says:

    Also this was a poll of Adults not Registared Voters.

    Michael, where did you get that? It says Registered Voters.

  5. anjin-san says:

    I wonder who got to Gallup?

    Obama’s thugs? FEMA storm trooper? Acorn intimidation agents? Lots of possibilities…

  6. dissident says:

    Gallup reports that 51 percent of Republicans are saying they are “very enthusiastic” about voting this fall is up from 40 percent the prior week.

    An 11-point jump from last week to this week makes no sense on the conservative side. I think the poll is a lot of noise in general.

  7. Brummagem Joe says:

    anjin-san says:
    Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 06:04
    “Lots of possibilities”

    Don’t forget the black panthers.

    Michael says:
    Monday, July 19, 2010 at 23:58
    “Also this was a poll of Adults not Registared Voters. Throw it in the garbage.”

    I believe you can get over the counter medication for kneejerks these days.

    Take these summer polls with a large dose of salt but there appears to be a bit of trend over the last month, unemployment, people paying attention, who knows.

  8. EJ says:

    on RCP… i noticed that the gallup poll changed from RV to A… if thats true, then this change in the sample would account for most if not all of the change.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/generic_congressional_vote-901.html

  9. Brummagem Joe says:

    Oh boy, panic is in the air!

  10. Juneau: says:

    It’s an anomaly. This is a fluke poll, or perhaps over sampled on the left side of the spectrum. You don’t go from 7 down to 6 up in a week.

  11. Brummagem Joe says:

    Juneau: says:
    Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 13:58

    “You don’t go from 7 down to 6 up in a week.”

    MOE’s

  12. Brummagem Joe says:

    Juneau: says:
    Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 13:58

    “You don’t go from 7 down to 6 up in a week.”

    look at the Republican numbers in late May!!

  13. sam says:

    “Look at the Republican numbers in late May!!”

    Juneau: That’s different.

  14. Juneau: says:

    Juneau: That’s different.

    What – you’re creating responses for me now? “Please stand by, for a word from our sponsor…”

  15. Brummagem Joe says:

    Juneau: says:
    Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 18:27
    “What – you’re creating responses for me now?”

    It wouldn’t be very difficult would it?

  16. Juneau: says:

    It wouldn’t be very difficult would it?

    Hey, skippy… you might want to check the stats on your Gallup poll again. Turns out they’re breaking the rules of polling with this one by combining two different models – Sample of Registered Voters, and Sampling of Adults. Big no-no in polling practice, and it skewed the results.

    Sorry. Please don’t cry, it only makes me giggle.