What Bush & Company Has Done To The Republican Party

Discussion in 'Politics' started by ZZZzzzzzzz, Mar 23, 2007.

  1. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationw...23mar23,0,195804.story?coll=la-home-headlines

    Fewer pledge allegiance to the GOP
    A poll says 35% of those surveyed identify with Republicans. Public attitudes seem to be drifting toward Democrats' values.

    By Janet Hook
    Times Staff Writer

    March 23, 2007

    WASHINGTON — Public allegiance to the Republican Party has plunged during George W. Bush's presidency, as attitudes have edged away from some of the conservative values that fueled GOP political victories, a major survey has found.

    The survey, by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, found a "dramatic shift" in political party identification since 2002, when Republicans and Democrats were at rough parity. Now, 50% of those surveyed identified with or leaned toward Democrats, whereas 35% aligned with Republicans.

    What's more, the survey found, public attitudes are drifting toward Democrats' values: Support for government aid to the disadvantaged has grown since the mid-1990s, skepticism about the use of military force has increased and support for traditional family values has decreased.

    The findings suggest that the challenges for the GOP reach beyond the unpopularity of the war in Iraq and Bush.

    "Iraq has played a large part; the pushback on the Republican Party has to do with Bush, but there are other things going on here that Republicans will have to contend with," said Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Center. "There is a difference in the landscape."

    A key question is whether the trends signal a broad and lasting change in the balance of power between the national parties or a mood swing that will pass or moderate. It remains to be seen whether Democrats can capitalize on Republican weaknesses and achieve durable political dominance.

    "This is the beginning of a Democratic opportunity," said Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuel, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. "The question is whether we blow it or not."

    Whit Ayres, a Republican pollster, said he believed the Pew poll exaggerated his party's problems and that the situation would improve as attention shifted to choosing the GOP's 2008 presidential nominee.

    At that point, "we will have a far more level playing field than we have today," Ayres said.

    But other Republicans fear the poll signals a clear end to an era of GOP successes that began with President Reagan's election in 1980, saw the party take control of Capitol Hill in 1994 and helped elect Bush twice.

    "There are cycles in history where one party or one movement ascends for a while and then it sows the seeds of its own self-destruction," said Bruce Bartlett, a conservative analyst and author of the 2006 book "Impostor: How George W. Bush Bankrupted America and Betrayed the Reagan Legacy."

    Bartlett added, "It's clear we have come to an end of a Republican conservative era."

    The Pew poll measured the views of 2,007 adults from Dec. 12 through Jan. 9. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

    The current gap between Republican and Democratic identification — which Pew measured by counting people who said they leaned toward a party as well as those with firm allegiances — is the widest since the group began collecting data on party allegiance in 1990.

    As recently as 2002, the two parties were tied, with each drawing support from 43% of those surveyed. But Democrats have gained an advantage over Republicans almost every year since.

    Kohut said the spread between the parties mostly reflected the defection of independents from the GOP more than a more favorable assessment of the Democrats.

    The survey found that the proportion of those expressing a positive view of Democrats has declined since January 2001 — when Bush took office — by 6 percentage points, to 54%. But the public's regard for Republicans has cratered during the Bush years, with the proportion holding a favorable view of the GOP dropping 15 points, to 41%.

    Although Republicans rode to political power calling for smaller government, support for government action to help the disadvantaged has risen since the GOP took control of Congress in 1994. At that point, a Pew survey found that 57% said the government had a responsibility to take care of people who could not take care of themselves; now, 69% said they believed that.

    On the other hand, support for Bush's signature issue — a strong, proactive military posture — has waned since 2002, when 62% said that the best way to ensure peace was through military strength. In the recent poll, 49% said they believed that.

    On social issues, the survey found that support for some key conservative positions was on the decline. For instance, those who said they supported "old fashioned values about family and marriage" dipped from 84% in 1994 to 76% in the recent survey. Support for allowing school boards to have the right to fire homosexual teachers has dropped from 39% in 1994 to 28%.
  2. neophyte321

    neophyte321 Guest

    Balderdash ...

    "support for government aid.....", Might be explained by demographics, the baby-boomers are started to grey en-mass.

    "skepticism about the use of military" ... Reagan won the cold-war without firing a shot. WWI,WWII, Korea,Vietnam, Bosnia... all entered into by DEMS

    Bush has certainly done damage to the GOP, hell I voted Democrat last time around to send a message, but my values certainly haven't changed.

    won't take much to swing people back ....

    commodization of human embryos
    gay marriage
    increased taxes
    government take-over of healthcare
    amnesty for illegals
    liberal judges
    reparations/affirmative action
    another Michael Moore Movie
    etc, etc ...
  3. I've been saying this for a while. Bush has wrecked the Republican Party, although in fairness he had a lot of help from the congressional leadership and the backstabbers in the Senate led by McCain, Hagel and Graham. The party regulars are still in total denial about it, and apparently think the key is to appeal to illegal immigrants and tone down the social issues.

    As things stand now, two of the Republican coalition's most important factions, traditional "paleo-conservatives" and evangelicals, are totally turned off. The key thing about those factions is they don't think of themselves as "Republicans". Rather they think of themselves as conservatives or religious people who happen to vote republican. Lose them and it might not be that easy to get them back. They likely won't vote for liberal democrats, but democrats don't need them to win. Republicans do.

    The alternative for Republicans is to try and attract independents, economically conservative but socially liberal boomers, soccer moms and immigrants, ie the Arnold caucus. Good luck. It might work in California with a movie star candidate, but I don't see Guiliani turning out southern voters, for example.
  4. jem


    you take any soccer mom living in the suburbs and you can bet there is a 70-80 percent chance she would like lower taxes, better schools and police. She also believes in God. Those values still represent the large majority of the voters.

    The issues are not that tough.
  5. Agreed, but that's not what they vote on in national elections. The God believing soccer mom also believes in her right to have a doctor crush the skull of her unborn child. That is but one example of the conflicted attitudes of the average voter. They want it both ways, and that just can't happen, except in politics, which is why we're stuck with all the "flip flopping". Which way will the wind blow today is the political puzzle the candidates are trying to get a handle on. As much as everyone says they want a straight shooter, we all know the straight shootin' type has a snowballs chance in hell of winning.
  6. Reminds me much of 1994 when the Repubs took the house after 40years. Although they now look to be destined to wander in the desert for another 40 years. Very sad.

    Quite a legacy Bush will leave. He should hide his head in shame for the remainder of his short and remorsefully painful years.

  7. jem


    Not that it is important, but I do not believe that for a second. Over the last ten -15 years protestants have really gotten into the pro life camp.

    There maybe a still a a little 51-49 action in polls which ask the question - do you believe an abortion should be allowed in cases of rape or incest, but sense that that a majority of voters would favor very restrictive access to abortion.

    The back and forth games played by politicians comes from money and organized lobbys, not confusion by the soccer moms. The soccer moms were the group that turned on the administration about the war.

    You have the soccer moms you have the presidency because soccer dads are not far behind.
  8. maxpi


    add to the list:

    conservatives never allowed to finish a sentence on tv discussions

    "Mr. Bush" instead of President Bush

    Democrats refusals to answer questions from Fox News reporters because they don't want to "legitimize" Fox

    Democrats ovbious fear that blacks will mainstream themselves and get off the socialist plantation
  9. "conservatives never allowed to finish a sentence on tv discussions"

    Never, ever, ever, ever....

    Oh, except on Fox news, fair and balanced as it is...where Facisthannity and O'Idiot always let everyone finish their sentences before responding or cutting off the guests...

    Oh, I think liberals like the way the republican party accepts blacks as they are...that is why we see so many blacks in the republican party acting, dressing, talking, and behaving like their fellow blacks.

    Surely this black man would be welcome at a republican function, as long as he dressed according to republiklan rules, spoke according to republiklan rules, dressed according to republiklan rules, thought in lock step with republiklan rules...

    <img src=http://www.beepworld.de/memberdateien/members8/freerain/rastaman.jpg>

    Yeppers, that old repugniklan party sure loves diversity and individuality practiced by its members...

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