Polling released last week shows Democrats taking clear leads in generic legislative ballot polling in Iowa, New Hampshire, and North Carolina - three key swing states which have all voted Republican in recent presidential elections.
Buried in polling released last week by Public Policy Polling, Democrats in Iowa, New Hampshire and North Carolina are surging in legislative polling.
This brings to six the number of states where Democrats have taken clear leads in legislative polling this year. Earlier surveys in Colorado, Minnesota, and Maineshowed Democrats leading by 7%, 9%, and 14%, respectively. Republican state legislators earned no better than an anemic 41% in any of these polls.
After Maine, the numbers most worrisome for Republicans might be the ones in New Hampshire and Iowa. Both stateshave redistricting laws that resulted in thoroughly scrambled district maps for 2012, so a lead in generic ballot polling is likely to have more impact this year than it otherwise would.
And New Hampshire, specifically, has a history of producing wild swings in its legislative elections. Democrats gained nearly 100 New Hampshire House seats and nearly doubled their numbers in the state Senate in 2006, even though New Hampshire Democrats won just 52% of the votes for Congress that same year.
Other New Hampshire polling suggests this election could prove even more volatile, as New Hampshire voters seem to be outraged, specifically, at legislative Republicans. In fact, “Republicans in the legislature” was the second most common response in an open-ended question asking voters to identify the state’s “most important problem” – only the economy was mentioned more often.
Collectively, these six states include several of the most important state legislative battlegrounds in the country, and the consistent Democratic lead in so many swing states is a cause for optimism.
Voters across the country, it seems, are taking note of the corruption, extremism, and other misdeedsthat followed Republicans into power in states like these – and they’re already crying out for a change.