Storm Clouds Gather For Democrats

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Charlie Cook, who is among the most respected and tested of Washington’s electoral handicappers, sent out an update today, warning of bad news on the 2010 horizon for President Obama and his Democratic allies.

[T]he situation this summer has slipped completely out of control for President Obama and Congressional Democrats. Today, The Cook Political Report’s Congressional election model, based on individual races, is pointing toward a net Democratic loss of between six and 12 seats, but our sense, factoring in macro-political dynamics is that this is far too low.

Many veteran Congressional election watchers, including Democratic ones, report an eerie sense of déjà vu, with a consensus forming that the chances of Democratic losses going higher than 20 seats is just as good as the chances of Democratic losses going lower than 20 seats. A new Gallup poll that shows Congress’ job disapproval at 70 percent among independents should provide little solace to Democrats. In the same poll, Congressional approval among independents is at 22 percent, with 31 percent approving overall, and 62 percent disapproving.

Such prognostication is, by definition, subject to change. But Cook is also not a railbird who spooks easily. For the full memo, click here.