Here endeth the close watching of the presidential election, and here beginneth the watching of the downticket.
ABC News’ latest poll shows a 12% national vote margin between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. That tells us, fifteen days out, that there isn’t much left to the story of who wins the presidency; we’re really just wondering if Utah or Georgia might flip blue, causing all of us to stare in wonderment.
But it’s the internals of the poll which are stunning. The number of Republicans calling themselves likely to vote has dropped seven percent in a matter of days. This means that the numbers of GOP voters for all of the races – downticket included – will likely be significantly depressed. (Note to tinfoil hatters: not repressed, depressed.) If that number is as curtailed as the poll suggests, we’re talking about a 2-4% swing toward the Democrats in House, Senate, Governor, and dogcatcher races.
This could be an epic whoopin’.
I’m reminded of my strategic forecast on the matter four years ago, but…oh, I’ll get into that in a piece you can expect out on around November 10th.