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Polls: Republicans gain ground in 2010 congressional elections

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Two new polls underscore problems facing Democrats in the 2010 congressional elections.

A new Gallup poll finds Republicans and Democrats tied at 45 percent among registered voters asked which party’s candidate they would prefer if the election for Congress were held today. When that question was asked in mid-2009, Democrats led by six percentage points.

A tie favors Republicans

Because Republicans are generally more likely to turn out to vote, especially in midterm elections, “a tie between Democrats and Republicans among registered voters probably corresponds to a Republican lead among likely voters,” wrote Gallup Poll senior editor Lydia Saad. Not only that, but Republicans say they are much more enthusiastic about voting than Democrats.

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll also finds Democrats and Republicans tied – at 46 percent – when voters were asked whom they preferred in the November House elections. As Washington Post political expert Dan Balz wrote, “As recently as four months ago, Democrats held a 51 to 39 percent advantage on this question.”

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