GOP Holds Lead in Home Stretch

Enthusiasm gap leaves Democrats trailing in likely voters
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 20, 2010 8:44 AM CDT
House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio, center, gestures while announcing the Republicans "Pledge to America" agenda, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010, at a lumber company in Sterling, Va.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – Republicans are in the driver’s seat as the 2010 election winds down, despite a vigorous last-ditch push from Democrats, according to a new Wall Street Journal poll. Overall, registered voters narrowly prefer a Democratic-controlled Congress to a Republican-controlled one, but among likely voters, Republicans hold a 50%-43% edge. In the 92 races considered most competitive, that gap yawns to 14 points.

“It's hard to say Democrats are facing anything less than a category four hurricane,” says one Democratic pollster, who conducted the poll alongside a Republican pollster. They predict that the GOP will pick up 52-53 seats, easily surpassing the 39 it needs to take over. The New York Times’ FiveThirtyEight blog gives Republicans a 73% chance of taking the House.

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