The Labor Day Bump For the Democrats Shouldn’t Be Ignored


There is a Democrat wave coming that is more likely than not going to cost the Republicans the House. While I suspect the wave will actually impact voting the most in already Democrat leaning areas, there are enough suburban Republican seats that are in play that the Democrats should win with a comfortable margin.

But I also think the latest polling needs to be put in perspective.

Much of that polling has come out around Labor Day. And if you go back into polling during midterm elections, Democrats seem to always have a bit of a bump around Labor Day polling. In Georgia, where I am, it is quite noticeable. Georgia’s gubernatorial election always happens in the midterms and with the exception of Sonny Perdue’s re-election in 2006, there has yet to be a Labor Day poll of the Georgia Governor’s race around Labor Day that has had the GOP in the lead, even though the GOP has won consistently since 2002.

To be sure, not every poll captures the bump. But it seems pretty reliable overall and is enough to affect polling averages. ABC and NBC, even in the 2016 Presidential election, saw Clinton up +8 and +4 respectively over their Labor Day polling. In 2014, the GOP ultimately prevailed with 5.7% of the vote, but around Labor Day the polling had it close.

I’m sure there will be some who read the numbers otherwise and there’ll be some who accuse me of trying to claim the polling is wrong altogether. I do think the polling helps Democrats during most holidays and weekends. But I do not think the polling trends and averages are altogether wrong. The Democrats are going to have a stellar year.

What I do think is that we should not have as much irrational exuberance in the press based on polling that comes out around Labor Day.

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Erick Erickson
By Erick Erickson

Erick Erickson

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