According to the many experts, Republicans are expected to hold the House and could even take the Senate. This seems to be a perplexing turn of events for many in the media.
“Poll: Democrats’ advantage on key issues is not translating to a midterm-election edge,” reads the headline of a Washington Post piece by Dan Balz and Scott Clement examining the guts of a Washington Post-ABC News poll — which, in turn, is titled “Democrats hold issue advantage, but not on 2014 midterm vote.”
Take health care. The authors explain that despite “the problems with the health-care law’s implementation” (because only the “implementation” has been problematic, right?), “Democrats maintain an edge over Republicans on which party Americans trust to deal with the issue, by a margin of 44 percent to 36 percent.”
In hypothetical terms, Democrats do hold a lead on the “trust” between the two parties — a lead that has significantly contracted since Barack Obama held 20-point leads on a Republican challenger back in 2008. More significantly, though, what the authors left out of the story was that 15 percent of extraordinarily sensible voters say they don’t trust either party to handle their health care choices.
Once we recalculate, adding in those numbers, here’s what the poll actually tells us:
–Americans who want Democrats running their health care: 44 percent.
–Americans who do not want Democrats running their health care: 51 percent.