The Washington Post had a great article the other day about how the Democrats are fired up and ready to take it out on the Republicans:
Intense and widespread opposition to President Bush is likely to be a sharp spur driving voters to the polls in this fall's midterm elections, according to strategists in both parties, a phenomenon that could give Democrats a turnout advantage over Republicans for the first time in recent years.
"Angry voters turn out and vote their anger," said Glen Bolger, a pollster for several Republican congressional candidates. "Democrats will have an easier time of getting out their vote because of their intense disapproval of the president. That means we Republicans are going to have to bring our 'A' turnout game in November."
The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll showed 47 percent of voters "strongly" disapprove of Bush's job performance, vs. 20 percent who said they "strongly approve."
The intense opposition to Bush is larger than any faced by Clinton. For all the polarization the 42nd president inspired, Clinton's strong disapproval never got above 37 percent in Post-ABC polls during his presidency.
Democratic pollster Geoff Garin said GOP House candidates have reason to worry. His surveys find that 82 percent of Americans who say they voted for Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) in 2004 plan to vote for a Democrat for the House this year. But only 65 percent who voted for Bush say they will vote for a Republican House nominee, Garin said. The remaining 35 percent say they are open to voting for a Democrat or staying home.
"We get a large chunk of Bush voters who are not motivated to go out and vote for Republicans this fall," Garin said. "That puts a lot of red districts into play."
Bruce, 54, said she is a moderate Republican and has given money to the party, but now she is exasperated with Bush and his economic policies. She recounted a conversation with neighbors who support Bush because of "moral issues." "I said, 'While he's not killing babies, he's killing you' " with high gasoline prices, a soaring deficit and other problems, Bruce said. "He is going to bankrupt us all."
She said she will vote for Democrat Harold E. Ford Jr. in the contest to replace retiring Sen. Bill Frist (R). She called Ford, a five-term House member from nearby Memphis, "a wonderful gentleman."
Garin predicts that Bush's unpopularity will produce many voters like Bruce and Jackson in November. "The rule this year," he said, playing on an adage, "may be that all local politics is national."
Yesterday I pointed to a poll that showed Bush's disapproval in Upstate was 67%, and Dan Maffei's polling showed Bush's disapproval at 65% (49% strongly disapprove) in the district. Jimbo is really hoping now that people don't find out he votes with Bush 88% of time.