Glen Bolger, a Republican, and Stan Greenberg, a Democrat, are the two very well respected pollsters behind the NPR generic congressional poll 3BP highlighted earlier this week.
It’s been getting amazing buzz thanks to their focus on the 70 targeted congressional districts, rather than hitting every single district. The tighter focus provided a better idea of where voters stand in the districts that matter.
Well, it turns out Bolger and Greenberg didn’t just test where people stand on congressional candidates, but they also tested the all-important messages for both Parties. These are the messages and themes that can and should define a campaign.
Here’s the post about those messages as written by Bolger:
Four questions were asked pairing a GOP message against a Democratic message. Stan Greenberg wrote the Dem messages, and I wrote the GOP messages. (This blog post does not reflect the opinions of either NPR or GQR). The GOP won all four message fights. Handily.
Now, I’m not bragging or implying that I have significant message writing skills in comparison to Stan. In 2006 and 2008, the Dem messages he wrote kicked the heck out of the GOP messages I wrote. And that’s the point — these data are very compelling when both parties put their best foot forward and one side’s argument consistently wins by an outside of the margin level. So, it’s not like I suddenly got smarter or he got dumber. The political environment has shifted at whiplash speed.
These four messages work well for Republicans. Campaigns at all levels — not just the congressional level — should seek to use elements of these messagings. Expect that the Democrats will try and change up their language to close the gap, but, blogging as a veteran of 2006 and 2008, when the general tide is against you on issues, it is very hard to tweak language and win.
On the economy and jobs, the Republican wins that 53%-41% — both overall and in the Dem Congressional Districts.
On health care, the Republican wins 52%-42%.
On financial regulation and reform, the Republican wins this message 53%-41%, including 55%-39% in the GOP districts and 52%-41% in the Dem districts.
On overall message, or “the summation of our view versus their view of the last two years” — by a 52%-39% margin.
You can read the text of those messages here. And I highly recommend that you do.