The Republican Party: Still Unpopular, Still Winning

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Sept. 29 2010 12:01 PM

The Republican Party: Still Unpopular, Still Winning

There's a lot to chew on in the NBC/WSJ poll just out , and look at the favorable numbers for Republicans. They are increasing, slowly. Very slowly. In December 2008, the party had a 27/46 favorable/unfavorable rating. Today, right before a rout, it has a 31/43 favorable/unfavorable rating. Sarah Palin, a political celebrity who bears exactly no blame for the recession, has a 30/48 favorable rating. In 1994, a slight plurality of voters said their votes for Republicans were votes for them, not against Democrats; it's the reverse this year.

You know what? It doesn't matter. The hatred of Congress, of the health care law (full-on repeal has majority support now), of Nancy Pelosi (a 22/50 favorable/unfavorable split) -- everything you know is basically confirmed. Voters are only marginally more interested in GOP control of Congress than they are in retaining Democratic control of Congress, but they're passionately into the idea of destroying the Congress they have right now.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.