Campaigns and elections

Why Approval of Congress Matters (Redux)

Aug 4 '11

The new CBS/New York Times poll — which finds that 82% of Americans disapprove of Congress — is getting noticed.  Mark Blumenthal runs down what a drop in approval might mean, with quotes from me, Brendan Nyhan, and David Jones.

Let me link again to my earlier post on the effects of congressional approval, based on the research of Jones and Monika McDermott.  A key graf:

bq. What does this imply about the seats that will be won and lost in 2012?  Jones and McDermott estimate that, in the 1974-2006 elections, a 10-point decrease in approval led to a loss of 17 seats, on average.

They are referring to seats lost by the majority party in the House.