Slightly more Americans identify as Democrat than Republican, but recently history indicates that edge isn’t enough to make up for the energy GOP voters will hold this November, according to Gallup.
“That Republican Party turnout advantage leaves the Democratic Party politically vulnerable in midterm election years when they do not have a significant cushion in partisanship,” the pollsters said.
A narrow, 2-percent lead for Democrats is similar to what Gallup measured in 1994, 2002 and 2010 — strong years for Republicans.
“In years when Democrats enjoyed a wide lead in partisanship, even as Democrats turned out at lower rates than Republicans, the electorate still included more Democrats than Republicans,” Gallup explained. “The two years that fit that description — 1998 and 2006 — are the years in which Democrats gained seats in the House.”
In summary, Gallup says Democrats will have to “match or exceed” GOP turnout if they want to cut into the size of the Republican majority in the House and retain control of the Senate.