These days, poll-reading Republicans should find plenty of reason to be optimistic about the 2009 and 2010 elections. First, the out party is always helped by a president’s low approval rating. This cycle will be no different, especially if the polls keep trending the way they have recently:

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Wednesday shows that 29% of the nation’s voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-nine percent (39%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -10. The President’s Approval Index rating is down four points over the past week and 11 points over the past month (see trends).

As bad as those numbers are, these are worse news for the White House:

Just 23% believe health care costs will go down if health care reform is passed. Most (53%) expect prices would rise and 50% expect the quality of care would decline.

As if that isn’t enough to get the gloomiest conservative a bit optimistic, there’s this polling:

Support for Republican and Democratic congressional candidates changed little this week in the latest edition of the Generic Ballot.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 42% would vote for their district’s Republican congressional candidate while 39% would opt for their Democratic opponent.

Support for Democratic candidates is up one point from last week, while Republican support remains unchanged.

These trends are changing the landscape for specific 2009 elections, too:

A new SurveyUSA poll of the Virginia gubernatorial race finds Republican Bob McDonnell leading by 15 points over his Democratic opponent, Creigh Deeds. This represents the largest margin either candidate has enjoyed in any poll since the June 9 primary.

The GOP candidates for lietenant governor (which is voted on separately from the governor) and attorney general also lead by double digits.

Deeds led in the first poll taken following his darkhorse primary victory, but McDonnell has led in every other head-to-head survey taken over the last seven months. McDonnell defeated Deeds in the 2005 attorney general race by just more than 300 votes.

McDonnell 55
Deeds 40
Und 5

President Obama carried Virginia in 2008. Since then, his dropping support is costing Creigh Deeds points in his campaign against Bob McDonnell. If President Obama doesn’t turn things around quickly, then he’ll be an anchor around Democrats’ necks. His unpopularity is the biggest reason why Republicans are leading the Generic Ballot Question and why Democrats are struggling so mightily.

Frankly, I think it’s already too late for Creigh Deeds to turn things around. I’m counting on that returning to GOP control.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

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