MSNBC, the Washington Post, and others have all published or opined recently about how Georgia is trending blue.
It’s not, and it’s not likely to be anytime soon.
The Post offered a nuanced take, saying Senate and gubernatorial hopefuls Michelle Nunn and Jason Carter were accelerating the shift to battleground status and pegging Georgia as one of the only states in which “Democrats have even plausible hopes of taking a Senate seat from Republicans in 2014.”
Meanwhile, MSNBC took a wholesale dip in the eggnog.
“There is a liberal movement brewing in the Peach State,” read the caption below Chris Hayes’s segment.
But that notion pays no mind to the electoral trends that have dominated the state for the last decade.
Republicans have held the governor’s mansion since George W. Bush’s first midterm, both branches of General Assembly since 2004, and the party laid claim to every statewide office in 2010. Nine of fourteen congressional seats are held by the GOP, Mitt Romney took more votes from the state last year than John McCain in 2008, and a Democratic presidential nominee has not won its electoral votes since 1992.
Current public opinion, both towards policies and the elected officials themselves, also tells a different tale.
Some 47 percent of respondents said they felt Obamacare was going to drive up their costs in a recent survey, compared to just 11 percent who felt the unpopular law would actually make healthcare more affordable. Furthermore, a third of those surveyed predicted it would outright worsen the quality of care.
Comparing state and federal lawmakers also shows that Georgia voters are fairly satisfied with the status quo in Atlanta. A separate survey pegged incumbent Republican Governor Nathan Deal with a 54 percent approval rating, while just 42 percent gave Obama high marks. The Georgia General Assembly carried a 47 percent approval rating, compared to just 11 percent for Congress.
That’s not to say Democratic pollsters haven’t tried to paint a different picture. Public Policy Polling has repeatedly sought to cast the state’s party makeup as evenly split between Republican and Democrat, and were scoffed at by onlookers aware of the state’s electoral composition.