The recent data showed a big shift among voters from December when Democrats led the GOP, 51-36. The recent upswing for the majority party is likely due to the recent passage and benefits of the Republican tax plan that was signed into law by President Trump.
Since that bill, many businesses have given their employees bonuses and increased minimum wages. This has likely attributed to the net positive for Republicans as more and more voters feel their pocketbooks growing. As James Carville famously said, "it's the economy, stupid."
"The president devoted a significant amount of the State of the Union address touting a growing economy and his new tax plan. While there is still some way to go to really win over the public, it looks like the needle has moved in the Republicans' direction since passage of the tax bill," said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.
Despite the recent uptick for Republicans in a generic House race, the GOP should tread lightly. Congress has historically low approval ratings. Also, the tide of history is pushing against the GOP. Since 1946, the President's party in midterm elections have lost an average of 25 House seats. This fall, Democrats need to flip 24 seats to retake the people's chamber. Additionally, in 16 of the last 18 midterm elections, the President's party has lost House seats. That includes wave elections by the opposing party in 2006, 2010, and 2014.
The GOP does have a slight advantage in the House. With all 435 seats up for grabs, 230 House districts voted for President Trump in 2016 while only 205 went for Hillary Clinton. The looming question remains, can Republicans walk a fine line between selling popular policies and a deflecting from a President that has an approval rating that hovers between the upper 30s and low 40s? The Muller investigation , the President tweeting, changes in the economy, memos, culture wars, and more representatives retiring, nine months is a lifetime in politics.The State of the Union feels like a years ago and that happen, Tuesday. A lot can still change for both parties between now and November.