Can national polls predict House elections?

… In the past, the generic ballot has overstated Democratic support, as polls from 1992, 1988 and 1980 demonstrate. But the polls’ predictive power has increased in recent years.

The best work on this has been done by Dartmouth’s Joseph Bafumi, Columbia’s Robert Erikson and Temple’s Christopher Wlezien. Their model uses national generic ballot polls, as well as which party holds the presidency, to estimate how many seats each party will pick up. And this model performs quite well. …

What does this mean for 2012? [cont.]

Dylan Matthews, Washington Post

Generic ballot polls: