Midterms are a chance for polling industry to redeem itself, says pollster

Pollster Mark Penn said Wednesday that pollsters have a chance to redeem themselves in November's midterm elections after predicting President TrumpDonald John TrumpDACA recipient claims Trump is holding ‘immigrant youth hostage’ amid quest for wall Lady Gaga blasts Pence as ‘worst representation of what it means to be Christian’ We have a long history of disrespecting Native Americans and denying their humanity MORE would lose in 2016. 

"Could there be another upset? Could we be wrong? Pollsters don't think so. They think when it comes to the House, they have it covered. If pollsters are wrong again, wow, the entire profession will have egg on its face," Harris Poll co-director Mark Penn told Hill.TV's Joe Concha on "What America's Thinking." 

"This is the chance for the polling profession to redeem itself by making conventional wisdom, Republicans lose the House and Republicans hold on to the Senate because that's what they're telling America," he continued. 

Penn's comments come as polls show Democrats leading in a series of House races, while Republicans appear to lead in contentious Senate races. 

The Real Clear Politics polling average on Wednesday showed Republicans trailing Democrats by 7.2 percentage points.

Many pollsters and forecasters took a hit in 2016 after they predicted Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonIdentity politics and the race for the Democratic nomination O'Rourke’s strategy: Show Americans the real Beto Conservatives pound BuzzFeed, media over Cohen report MORE would beat Trump in a landslide before winning historically Democratic states, including Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. 

The American Association for Public Opinion Research released an autopsy report on the failures in 2016, and found that underestimating polling Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan, was the biggest factor in incorrect results. 

— Julia Manchester