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Op-Ed: Enough with the 2016 Talk

by Lisa Mathias

The Winston Group’s Stephanie Slade writes for US News and World Report, addressing the constant speculation surrounding the 2016 elections. Slade writes:

The idea that polls taken 18 months before the midterm elections could reliably tell us much of anything about where the electorate will be next November is almost a farce. Just one-twelfth of Obama’s second term is in the books so far; spending time worrying about who might choose to run in an election 42 months away suggests we’re working with a set of seriously misplaced priorities.

To read the full editorial, turn to

McManus: D.C. doubles down on the sequester

by Lisa Mathias

In an op-ed for Sunday’s LA Times, Doyle McManus addresses the looming sequester and the failure of both political parties to reach a compromise. McManus turned to David Winston for some insight on the GOP side of the debate:

“Most people agree [with Republicans] that the deficit is one of the reasons the economy can’t get back on track,” said David Winston, a GOP pollster who advises House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio). “So let’s get to work cutting the deficit. And then we can ask a second question: Do you really want your taxes to go up?”

To read the full op-ed, click to

LA Times: Neither side blinks in federal budget standoff

by Lisa Mathias

Today’s LA Times released a story on the looming federal spending cuts, and how neither Republicans nor the White House backed down on their solutions to address the nation’s budget problem. The Winston Group’s David Winston commented in the story:

“Republicans are saying: We need to put the cuts on the board,” said GOP strategist David Winston, who is close to the House Republican leadership. “We need to start talking about how we deal with this spending problem.”

To read the full article, turn to

U.S. News: Obama’s Losing Hand

by David Winston

Over on U.S. News and World Report‘s Thomas Jefferson Street politics blog, I have a post today urging Republicans to stand strong on the sequester:

There is simply no reason for the GOP to accept “additional revenue,” Democrats’ cutesy euphemism for higher taxes, now. Spending cuts are coming. The president can work across the aisle to target those cuts more carefully, but he cannot force his opposition to trade them away for something they don’t want. Unlike with the scheduled expiration of the Bush tax cuts, allowing current law to go into effect does not produce an unacceptable outcome for Republicans. Cuts from a scalpel may be preferable to cuts from a machete, but when you’re $16 trillion in debt, cuts from any instrument beat none at all.

Click here to read the full article.

Real Clear Politics: Obama and Boehner: In Need of Couples Counseling?

by Lisa Mathias

In today’s Real Clear Politics, Caitlin Huey-Burns writes about the issue of President Obama and Speaker John Boehner having difficulty working together to solve the nation’s fiscal problems. David Winston gave his thoughts on Obama:

“Prior to this president, no president had ever run a deficit over a trillion dollars,” says David Winston, a veteran pollster for House Republicans. “[Obama’s] negative impact on the economy is his Achilles’ heel.”

To read the full article, turn to

LA Times: Obama offers scaled-back plan to limit tax increases

by Lisa Mathias

There was plenty of news on the fiscal cliff over the Christmas holiday, and the WG’s David Winston was quoted in LA Times, giving his insight on what needed to happen:

In a matter of months, a vote will be needed to raise the debt limit so the nation can pay its bills. That has the potential to create a replay of the 2011 battle that led to the current standoff. A new bill to keep the federal government functioning will also be due in the spring.

“Both sides need to recognize what the other can do,” said David Winston, a longtime GOP strategist who is close to the House leadership. “Republicans and Democrats, the last thing they want to do is go off the fiscal cliff.”

To read the full article, turn to

WaPo: ‘Fiscal cliff’: Consensus on increasing tax revenue, a wide gulf on how to do it

by Lisa Mathias

The Washington Post’s Lori Montgomery writes about the looming “fiscal cliff” and the negotiations taking place to fix the situation. The article quotes public support for the Republican solution to the issue as shown in our recent November survey:

They pointed to a new poll by the Winston Group, a GOP research firm whose president, David Winston, is close to Boehner. Sixty-five percent of those surveyed preferred a deal that wipes out “special interest tax loopholes and deductions commonly used by the wealthy” over an approach that raises tax rates on “Americans earning more than $250,000” on Jan. 1.

To read the full article, turn to

Politico: House Democrats face uphill slog in 2014

by Lisa Mathias

Sunday’s Politico featured a story on the battle for Democrats to win majority of the House, and for Republicans to keep it. Citing historical trends in congressional elections, Alex Isenstadt turned to David Winston for some insight, citing Winston’s experience being the top aide to then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich:

“Just because there is a six-year itch doesn’t mean it will happen,” said Winston, who now advises House Speaker John Boehner. “You go back to 1998, there were some Republicans who thought they were going to gain 20 to 30 seats, and they ended up losing five or six.”

To read the full article, turn to

WaPo: The remarkable consistency of Democratic party ID — in 1 chart

by Lisa Mathias

The Fix blog’s Chris Cilizza uses our updated exit poll data to take a look at the breakdown of Party ID in past elections. Some points he noticed:

What’s remarkable is the consistency of the percentage of voters calling themselves Democrats over that time period. In those eight presidential elections, Democratic party ID has never dipped below 37 percent and never risen above 39 percent.
There has been more fluctuation in Republican party ID over that time. Republicans reached 37 percent of the electorate in the 2004 election but have dipped to 32 percent in each of the last two presidential contests — the party’s lowest ebb in 30 years.

To read the full blog post, turn to

The Daily: Minimizing “Mediscare”

by Lisa Mathias

The Daily’s Dan Hirschhorn writes about how Medicare continues to be an on-going debate between Republicans and Democrats as campaign season continues. Hirschhorn points out that while it seems that President Obama is doing better in terms of Medicare, it may not be a huge difference in voter support for him yet, as The WG’s David Winston states:

Earlier this week, a Tampa Bay Times poll found that, even while Obama leads in the critical battleground of Florida, his advantage on the issue of Medicare is negligible.

“That is a dramatic shift in favor of Republicans,” David Winston, a Republican pollster close to House Speaker John Boehner. “Granted, Democrats still hold an advantage but it’s nowhere near where it used to be.”

To read more, turn to The Daily online.

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