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Pollster: Sour Economy Turns Voters Against Incumbents

U.S. Rep. Scott Murphy, D-N.Y., votes at Glens Falls High School in Glens Falls, N.Y, 02 Nov 2010

Preliminary exit polls indicate the economy is weighing heavily on voters' minds this mid-term election day. Our correspondent in Washington reports on very early polling results.

Pollster John Zogby, of Zogby International, told reporters in Washington Tuesday evening that early polling results fall in line with expectations.

"The exit polls are just now coming out, and they're only giving us a flavor of what's going on, and what I can tell you is that there are no surprises," said Zogby.

Polls show voters want to see a change.

"No surprise - 62 percent of those who voted today say that the nation is headed in the wrong direction," he said.

And, with unemployment near 10 percent, multiple polls indicate the economy is weighing on voters' minds as they cast their ballots. Such concern has helped to energize Republicans.

Many economists credit President Barack Obama with avoiding a depression through legislation such as the roughly $800-billion stimulus package aimed at reversing the worst recession to hit the U.S. in decades.

But Zogby said exit polls indicate voters are evenly split three-ways about the usefulness of the stimulus plan. One-third says it helped the economy, one-third says it hurt the economy and one-third says it made no difference.

"I think when you look at that, that 65 percent or 67 percent who say the stimulus either hurt or did not help, and put that alongside the 62 percent who say that the country is headed in the wrong direction, then what you have is a clear message," said Zogby.

Overall, Zogby said, this is looking to be a good day for Republicans, who are expected to make major gains in the U.S. Congress.

House of Representatives

Note: Vertical line represents number needed for majority (218).


Note: Vertical line represents number needed for majority (51).