Poll: Republican House bad for United States. Which is good for Democrats | Arkansas Blog

Monday, October 21, 2013

Poll: Republican House bad for United States. Which is good for Democrats

Posted By on Mon, Oct 21, 2013 at 6:42 AM

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CNN reports this morning:

Fifty-four percent say it's a bad thing that the GOP controls the House of Representatives, up 11 points from last December, according to a new CNN/ORC International poll conducted after the end of the 16-day partial government shutdown — the first time since the Republicans won back control of the House in the 2010 elections that a majority say their control of the chamber is bad for the country.

The poll also found that 63% of Americans think that Speaker of the House John Boehner should be replaced, a view shared by roughly half of all Republicans.

By a 44%-31% margin, people say they have more confidence in President Barack Obama rather than the GOP in Congress to deal with the major issues facing the country today. But 21% say they don't have confidence in either side.

Well. Such opinions are subject to change in fickle, instant-media driven America. But the snapshot in time explains why there's some heightened optimism about 2014 congressional races, including in Arkansas.

More statistical support for that point of view is illustrated by the Washington Post's Know More feature, which comes with backing explanation for the graphic reprinted at the top.

BLUE CHIP: James Lee Witt.
  • BLUE CHIP: James Lee Witt.
Did I say "even Arkansas"? Politico is writing here on a similar theme — the boost to recruiting given Democrats by the Republicans' disastrous government shutdown and debt default threat. It mentions "blue chip" candidates who've joined or are prepared to join the race.

Some of the Democratic recruits have statewide or national profiles. James Lee Witt, who was director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency under former President Bill Clinton, says he’s looking at running for the seat being vacated by Republican Rep. Tom Cotton.

.. Republicans are quick to point out that strong recruits are hardly a guarantee of success in red districts.

“It’s going to be difficult for these second-tier Democrat candidates to run as outsiders in Republican districts when President Obama and Harry Reid are leading their party and running Washington,” said Andrea Bozek, a National Republican Congressional Committee spokeswoman.

That, of course, is the question in Arkansas. Has the 4th District — and the rest of Arkansas — really turned irretrievably red? A well-funded, smart candidate with plenty of political savvy and rural bona fides is set to test that theory in the 4th. He'll most likely run against a Tea Party extremist, Bruce Westerman, who had an angry split with his own party over the private option implementation of Obamacare. They'll be with him against a Democrat, of course, but his legislative hijinks illustrated his extremism.

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