By Markos Moulitsas - 09/04/12 10:28 PM EDT
The data coming out of the Republican National Convention have been brutal for GOP standard-bearer Mitt Romney. Not only did he not get any convention bounce, per Gallup polling, he actually lost 2 points to President Obama. And no convention acceptance speech has scored as low as Romney’s did since Gallup started polling them in 1996.
None of this should be surprising to anyone watching the convention, where Ann Romney’s proclamations of love were immediately overruled by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s brusque declaration that “we have become paralyzed by our desire to be loved.” Where the trite message of “we built it” from businessmen and -women that had all benefited from government contracts, services, or infrastructure was unintentionally mocked by the New Mexico road-sign maker whining that he wasn’t getting enough government contracts. And, of course, Clint Eastwood proved that conventions are scripted for a reason.
Looking at the TPM polling composites of both national and battleground state polling, Romney is suffering from a chronic inability to rise out of the mid-40s, an obvious artifact of his preternaturally low favorability numbers.
He hits just 46 percent nationally, to Obama’s 47.8. In the 12 most competitive battleground states, Romney reaches 47 percent in just two of them, compared to 10 states for Obama. If the election were held today, Romney would win just two 2008 Obama states, Indiana and North Carolina, en route to a 332-206 Electoral College drubbing. And with recent polling showing a commanding Obama lead in Pennsylvania and 50 percent of the vote in Ohio and Florida, Romney has few avenues for a comeback.
Democrats are also enjoying strong numbers in key Senate and House races. While Republicans once bragged of surefire pickups in Nebraska, North Dakota and Missouri, only one of those remains. The Todd Akin debacle has suddenly given embattled incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill new life in Missouri, while former Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp actually leads in her battle against Republican Rep. Rick Berg in North Dakota. Panicked Republicans have abandoned the once-toss-up Senate battle in New Mexico and sent that cash northward.
With Republicans guaranteed to lose a seat in Maine and facing tough challenges to GOP-held seats in Arizona, Massachusetts and Nevada, they’re running out of places to pick up the four net seats they need.
In the House, Democrats are still celebrating the Paul Ryan pick. After spending millions of dollars trying to educate voters about Ryan and why he mattered, Romney did it for them for free. Not only do Democrats now firmly believe control of the House is in play, but circumstantial evidence suggests it.
A Daily Kos analysis of the past two cycles found that the party that released the most internal polls went and won the cycle. That’s not surprising — if you’re doing well, you release the numbers; otherwise, you don’t. Thus far, about 60 percent of internal polls released have come from Democratic candidates. Conclusive evidence? Not by a long shot, but House Republicans certainly aren’t acting cocky anymore.
Of course, anything can and will happen between now and Nov. 6. But Team Blue is firmly in control. And with the GOP convention behind them and super-PAC spending doing shockingly little to move the needle, Republican scoring opportunities have diminished drastically.
Moulitsas is the founder and publisher of Daily Kos.