It's a little late in the week for this, but I'll happily answer all questions you have about politics today and over the next few days. With the conventions over and the debates approaching, now is a good time to get things clarified or answered. So it's time for round two. You can find all my Q&A's under this tag.
Here are some quick facts about where things stand:
* Outside of tracking polls from Gallup and Rasmussen, which have had issues leaning to the right this year, Mitt Romney has not lead a single national poll in the month of September. At this point, Rasmussen is the only pollster showing Mitt Romney with a lead, making them an outlier.
* Barack Obama leads in all five electoral college projections (decides the election) that I'm aware of, and has all year. Most projections show that Mitt Romney cannot win without the state or Florida, even if he wins all other tossup states combined.
* Contrary to the hopes of the Romney-Ryan ticket, Wisconsin is still not in play.
* It now looks like Democrats will retain control of the Senate, perhaps losing just a single net seat this fall. It is already projected that Republicans will retain control of the House, but will lose net seats to narrow their majority.
* A few recent polls show more Americans believe the country is heading in the right direction than any time since 2009, and while still below 50%, this represents a 10+ point jump from last month. It's hard not to attribute that to the Democratic Convention, given the poor job reports we've seen recently, although other economic indicators are looking up (like housing).
* A CBS/New York Times poll as found Americans have a favorable opinion of the Democratic Party, 49-43. For CBS/NYT, that's the first time Dems have been in positive territory since late 2010.
* The same poll found Americans hold negative opinions of the Republican Party, 36-55. That's down from a high of 42-48 during the 2010 mid-term elections when the GOP did very, very well. A plurality of Americans haven't held a favorable view of the Republican Party in this poll since January of 2005.
My very quick analysis: Generally speaking, Americans actively dislike the Republican Party, are somewhat ambivalent towards the Democratic Party, and are disappointed in the lack of progress Dems have made since 2006. With favorables like that, if Democrats had made more progress on key issues, 2012 should by all rights be another big year for Democrats in Congress and for Barack Obama. But that's not how it's going to play out. In all likelihood, it'll be a mediocre but positive year for Dems in the House, the GOP in the Senate, and a decent year for Dems in the White House.
I currently project no change in power in Congress or the White House this year.
What questions do you have today?