Posted by Brad @ 11:41 am on May 19th 2009

Things are Tough All Over

Gallup’s poll showing the loss of Republican support, broken down by demographics, is pretty devastating.

We know, of course, that since 2001, party ID has swung 13 points away from the GOP. That’s bad enough. But what ought to terrify GOP analysts is how comprehensive that swing has been. Meaning, it’s not just that, say, liberals or yankees or minorities or whatever have swung a lot (thus pushing up the average) but other groups have remained stable or even increased their GOP. Virtually no group has remained stable with their identification with the Republican party. That 13 point swing looks as much like a median as a mean.

The four biggest groups to swing most heavily away from the Republican party? College graduates, youth, The Midwest, and those making under 30k a year. The first two are generally areas of Republican weakness, but a collapse of nearly 10 points across the Midwest? Losing the working poor (a very big component of the Reagan Revolution and Republican rural strength)? Losing 7% of voters making over 75k? 5 points for married folks? The only group that has remained even are those who attend church weekly, but even that is belied by the falk that less-frequent (but still frequent) church goers have moved 6% Democrat and self-described evangelicals only slightly less. Ironically, the groups which Republicans lost the least amount of ground with (but still lost ground) are 65 and overs, self-described “conservatives”, and nonwhites, the latter being the only relative bright spot, losing only about 1% of their nonwhite and only 2% of their black support (though translated to gross support, that probably amounts to many hundres of thousands of voters, and it’s not like the GOP has a lot of minority support to spare).

Still. We all know the country has swung Democratic. But that’s not the whole story. The whole story is how homogeneously it has done so.


  1. I thought this quote from HuffPo was right on:

    Two religions (in the broadest sense of the term) have destroyed the Republican Party: evangelical Christianity and Christian/Jewish Zionism. Evangelical Christianity created the Religious Right which forever linked the Republican Party to the antiabortion, anti-sex education, anti-evolution and anti-gay crusades. And both Christian and Jewish Zionism linked the Republican Party to what became the neoconservative movement with its roots in such publications as Commentary magazine and their shrill Israel-can-do-no-wrong anti-Arab agenda. (I knew the late editor of Commentary Norman Podhoretz quite well, and we met several times to build alliances between evangelicals and the far American Zionist far right. When it came to Arabs, I believe he was a real racist.)
    I would not call Zionism per se a religion, but I’m talking about secular goals pursued with religious fervor. I would call Zionism, American-style a politicized version of a religion.

    I think the neocon really took the movement off the deep end – the evangelicals have been around for a while – but the Evangelicals did support the war and they have to live with the consequences. So does the Republican party.

    Our only hope is that the neocons infect the Democrats now, which is not completely out of the questions.


    Comment by daveg — 5/20/2009 @ 12:38 pm

  2. Is there any evidence that the GOP’s Israel stance has hurt them with voters? Seems a tough sell, especially when Dems are selling much the same line.

    Comment by Rojas — 5/20/2009 @ 3:16 pm

  3. Well, not for the support for Israel per se as that support is low profile. However, the distorted policies that result are very bad for the party.

    The Iraq war was a direct outcome of the neocon/Zionist branch of the party and it was devastating to the party. They lost both houses long before the banking crsis.

    And the Republicans are still pushing insane foreign policy stances that are Israel motivated, such are more sanctions and continued troops in Iraq.

    The continued and illogical (from a US interests POV) ‘hawk’ stance of the Republicans is dooming them to minority party status for a long time.

    However, it is worth noting that the Democrats are being nudged in that direction as well. Bibi just got Obama to agree to a deadline with Iran.

    What is going to happen when that deadline passes and nothing has changed, which we all know will be the case.

    America is very tired of war in general, and the Democratic electorate in particular is strongly opposed to more escalation, so there is going to be a huge struggle when the check (cheque?) is due.

    Comment by daveg — 5/22/2009 @ 2:47 am

  4. BTW, best quote ever about Charles Kruthhammer’s wheelchair status:

    “How many more people did he put in wheelchairs (or worse) with his policy positions?”

    Comment by daveg — 5/22/2009 @ 2:49 am

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