Stu Rothenberg is starting to walk back some of his “sky is falling” rhetoric about the House. Here’s an example:
In North Dakota, veteran Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D) is proving that initial reports of his demise were exaggerated. Weeks ago, I spoke with someone who told me that Pomeroy had privately acknowledged that his chances of surviving this midterm were small, and early polling suggested that GOP challenger state Rep. Rick Berg was headed to a relatively clear victory.
While the two parties have different polls showing who is ahead, they agree Pomeroy and Berg are in a dogfight. The cycle still favors the Republican challenger, but the Congressman is not going away.
The only independent pollster polling in North Dakota is Rasmussen. And Pomeroy has out-raised his opponent by over a million bucks, and he’s outspent him 2:1. That’s a big deal in a cheap media market like North Dakota.
The fact is that the indicators in this race always pointed to a dogfight, and that Rothenberg, like Charlie Cook, tend to exaggerate uncertainty early in the cycle to drive subscriptions to their expensive publications. When it looks like they’re going to be wrong, they can always trot out a “little bird whispered in my ear” “I’ve got a secret” explanation that reinforces their positions as high priests in the cult of the savvy.