I’d like to believe that Congressional incumbents should be worried come November, but I’m willing to predict now that the status quo will win. Why, when the polling evidence indicates change may be imminent? Consider:
Most Americans describe themselves as being in an anti-incumbent mood heading into this fall’s midterm congressional elections, and the percentage of people who approve of their own representative’s performance is at the lowest level since 1994, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.
Especially worrisome for members of Congress is that the proportion of Americans who approve of their own representative’s performance has fallen sharply. Traditionally, voters may express disapproval of Congress as a whole but still vote for their own member, even from the majority party. But 55 percent now approve of their lawmaker, a seven-percentage-point drop over three months and the lowest such finding since 1994, the last time control of the House switched parties.
History may suggest that such numbers spell doom for the current Congress, but I’m stuck with the 55 percent approval number. Unless I’m mistaken, 55 percent is a majority sufficient to keep incumbents where they are, spending money and legislating liberties away. When the election shows that people are willing to step away from the usual vote for a recognizable name, and away from a vote for more federal “freebies”, I’ll believe that it’s 1994 all over again.
* Title reference here