- The Washington Times - Monday, August 30, 2010

HISTORIC POLL

GOP ballot lead unprecedented

Republicans have taken a 10-percentage-point lead over Democrats on the midterm generic ballot for Congress, the party’s largest lead in the nearly 70 years Gallup has tracked the measure.

The Republican leads of 6, 7 and 10 points this month - 51 to 41 among registered voters - are all higher than any previous midterm Republican advantage in Gallup’s history, which dates to 1942. Before this year, the highest such gap was five points, measured in June 2002 and July 1994. Elections in both of those years resulted in significant Republican gains in House seats, Gallup said.

Large leads on the generic ballot are not unprecedented for Democrats. The widest generic ballot lead in Gallup’s history was 32 points in the Democrats’ favor, measured in July 1974, just before Republican President Nixon’s resignation over the Watergate scandal.

Republicans are twice as likely as Democrats to be “very” enthusiastic about voting, and they hold - by one point - the largest such advantage of the year, the polling firm said.

The survey is based on aggregated data from registered voters surveyed Aug. 23 through 29.

WHITE HOUSE

Obama to avoid two words in speech

The White House says there are two words President Obama will not say Tuesday night in his speech about the end of the U.S. combat role in Iraq. The words not spoken: “Mission accomplished.”

Seven years ago, President George W. Bush stood on an aircraft carrier to declare an end to major combat operations in Iraq. A banner proclaiming “Mission Accomplished” flew nearby. The Bush White House came to deeply regret that sign as the war dragged on and U.S. deaths mounted.

Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said, “You won’t hear those words coming from us.” Instead, he said Mr. Obama will talk about what is involved in the U.S. troop drawdown and the changing mission in Iraq.

ARIZONA

Drones to watch Mexico border

PHOENIX | The U.S. government will have unmanned surveillance aircraft monitoring the whole southwestern border with Mexico from Sept. 1 as it ramps up border security in this election year, a top official said Monday.

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