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House Majority PAC Releases Polls in 8 GOP Districts; all 8 in Deep Trouble Back Home

On Wednesday, the House Majority PAC is releasing polls in eight targeted Republican House districts, which show all eight Republican incumbents in deep trouble back home. The districts polled are OH-06, MD-06, IL-08, CO-03, IA-04, MI-01, OH-07, and OH-16.

Each of the House districts polled has completed the redistricting process. The polls were conducted between January 18th – 23rd by Public Policy Polling (PPP).

These post-redistricting polls demonstrate that Democrats continue to expand the number of races in play as we seek to pick up 25 seats and win back the House including against Republicans who previously had safe districts.

“For the past year, House Republicans have done everything in their power to fight for tax breaks for the richest one percent at the expense of Medicare for seniors and jobs for middle class families,” said Alixandria Lapp, Executive Director of the House Majority PAC. “As a result, Republican incumbents in swing districts across the country are in deep trouble back home and Republican control of the House is in serious jeopardy. The House Majority PAC will continue holding House Republicans’ feet to the fire for failing middle class families.”

See enclosed polling memo from Tom Jensen, Director of Public Policy Polling, which will also be available on the House Majority PAC website.

From: Tom Jensen, Director of Public Policy Polling
To: Interested Parties
Subject: Pick up opportunities abound for House Democrats
Date: January 25, 2012

John Boehner’s first year as Speaker of the House has been an unmitigated disaster in the court of public opinion. Our national polling finds that he personally has a 26% approval rating nationally with 47% of voters disapproving of him. His caucus is even more unpopular, with Congressional Republicans owning a 63% disapproval rating. Among critical independent voters just 22% are happy with the current House majority, while 68% give it poor marks.

Over the last week PPP conducted polls for House Majority PAC in 8 districts around the country where there are incumbent Republicans and found all of them in direshape. These districts, along with 12 that PPP polled back in October, make it clear that there is a very wide playing field for Democrats in 2012 that will give them a serious chance atwinning back the House

Here’s the rundown on the newest round of polls:

-In Illinois’ 8th District, only 32% of voters think Congressman Joe Walsh deserves to be reelected, while 57% think it’s time for someone new. Congressional Republicans have a 30/57 favorability rating and only 28% of voters approve of Walsh’s job performance while 44% disapprove. Walsh trails a generic Democratic opponent 49-35 and may be the most vulnerable Republican incumbent in the country.

-In Iowa’s 4th District, only 48% of voters think Congressman Steve King deserves to be reelected, while 52% think it’s time for someone new. Congressional Republicans have a 40/44 favorability rating and King’s approval rating is 42%, well below the 50% mark generally considered safe for incumbents. King leads Christie Vilsack only 49-43 and trails her both with independents (48-37) and with voters who don’t live in his current 5th district (48-42)

-In Michigan’s 1st District, only 40% of voters want to give Congressman Dan Benishek a second term, while 60% want to replace him. Congressional Republicans have a 35/54 favorability rating in his district and Benishek’s approval is even lower than that with just 33% of voters giving him good marks to 45% who disapprove. He trails 2010 opponent Gary McDowell 46-41 in a hypothetical rematch.

-In Ohio’s 7th District, first term Congressman Robert Gibbs has rapidly become very unpopular, with only 37% of voters thinking he deserves reelection and 59% already thinking after just a year that it’s time for someone new. Congressional Republicans have a 37/53 favorability rating and Gibbs’ own approval rating is just 34%, with 51% of voters disapproving of him. He trails a generic Democratic opponent 43-42.

-In Maryland’s 6th District, long time incumbent Roscoe Bartlett faces a huge task getting reelected with only 37% of voters feeling he deserves another term while 60% think it’s time for him to be replaced. Congressional Republicans have a 39/52 favorability rating, and Bartlett’s approval is only 39% in his new district with 44% of voters disapproving of him. He runs even with a generic Democratic challenger at 42%, making it clear he’s in for a much tougher race than he’s recently been accustomed to.

-In Ohio’s 16th Congressional District, Jim Renacci makes yet another freshman Republican who voters have soured on quickly. Just 40% think he deserves to be reelected, while 60% believe it’s time for someone new. Congressional Republicans have a 37/52 favorability rating and Renacci’s own approval is even lower with just 31% of voters thinking he’s doing a good job to 38% who disapprove. Although Renacci was initially expected to be the favorite in his battle with fellow incumbent Democrat Betty Sutton that’s not the case- they’re knotted at 46%.

-In Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, 39% of voters support freshman ScottTipton for reelection, while 54% think he should be replaced. House Republicans have a 37/49 favorability rating in the district and Tipton’s approval rating is 36%, with 40% of voters giving him low marks. Tipton starts out ahead only 46-39 against challenger Sal Pace, a lead that is likely to shrink as Pace’s name recognition increases.

-In Ohio’s 6th Congressional District, 38% of voters think Bill Johnson deserves reelection, while 48% think it’s time for someone new. Congressional Republicans have a 35/50 favorability rating in the district and Johnson’s own approval rating is a paltry 32% with 31% of voters disapproving of him. In a rematch with predecessor Charlie Wilson Johnson leads only 42-41, representing a tightening from their 2010 face off. Johnson finds himself trailing 36-32 with independents.

Taken together the 20 polls PPP conducted for House Majority PAC in October and this monthtell a similar story. Most first term Republicans have become very unpopular, very quickly. A lot of the folks who first came to Washington in January 2011 won’t be back in January 2013. Beyond that redistricting has put several veteran Republicans who aren’t used to having to campaign hard into very difficult positions where they will have a hard time fending off Democraticchallengers. What we’re seeing at the district level is the same as what we’re seeing at the national level: House Republicans are very unpopular and that gives Democrats dozens of districts where they can play offense, which will give them a great chance at retaking control of the House.

In CO-3 569 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-4.1%.
In IA-4 974 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-3.1%.
In IL-8 500 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-4.4%.
In MI-1 867 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-3.3%.
In MD-6 500 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-4.4%.
In OH-6 768 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-3.5%.
In OH-7 693 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-3.7%.
In OH-16 812 registered voters were interviewed with a margin of error of +/-3.4%.

All polls were conducted between January 18th and 23rd.