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The Dem’s Discount Rate

March 24, 2010

A prominent pollster was giving a talk this week to some big-name corporate clients. He was asked: “How bad will it be for the Dems this year?”

His response: “Right now, there’s a discount rate of five to seven percent for almost every Democrat. What that means is that if you have a race where a New York Democrat is up by five points, he or she is really behind by as much as two points.”

One of the clients pressed: “Isn’t that just anti-incumbent sentiment?”

The pollster replied: “We looked closely at that question. We believe there has been a qualitative shift in voter sentiment. There’s a perception that the Democrats, which have all the power in New York, have really made things worse.”

One of the clients then asked the pollster to handicap the November elections. The pollster demurred, saying: “Ask me again next month. A lot depends on the budget battle. If there’s a long, drawn-out process with a poor product at the end, I’ll give you one answer. If they get a timely budget that minimizes the in-fighting, I may give you another.”

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