This column has spent much of the last nine months suggesting that Democrats’ chances of holding onto the White House were far more difficult than they (or many nonpartisan observers) believed. Democrats and their allies have been misled by national polls showing an even race or President Biden leading by narrow margins in a hypothetical horse race. They forget the extent that national polls, based on the popular vote, overstate Democratic strength. Once a party wins a state by 1 vote, everything in excess of that is effectively "wasted" in terms of the outcome of the Electoral College.

This column has also argued repeatedly that Biden is a much weaker candidate than many had thought, not just on concerns about age and health but also in the public’s assessment of his handling of the economy and inflation. Given all of that, it seemed a good time to discuss some challenges facing Republicans. These are generally of their own making.

Close your eyes and imagine that Republicans wake up tomorrow and decide that the House majority is overrated and that capturing

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