Friday, January 22, 2010

The Direction of the GOP

One lesson that can be taken from the recent GOP successes in Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Virginia is that your party can be a complete mess and still win an election.

Our national poll this week found that only 19% of voters in the country are happy with the direction of the Republican Party, compared to 56% who are unhappy with it. Even among independents, who have voted overwhelmingly for Scott Brown, Chris Christie, and Bob McDonnell 58% say they don't like the direction the GOP is headed in.

The GOP's own voters are displeased with where the party's going- 38% say they are unhappy with the current direction to 35% who support it. In a trend that perhaps provides at least a ray of hope to Democrats the Republicans unhappy with their own party are disproportionately moderates. 54% of them are displeased to 25% content- the question is what Democrats can do to get those folks to actually jump ship.

This much seems clear- if the Republicans keep winning even with a heavily damaged national brand it's an indication voters are choosing much more by what they're against right now than what they're for. I think a GOP controlled Congress for next year is still unlikely but it could be the best thing that ever happened to Barack Obama's reelection hopes.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Tom, I personally think that you're analysis isn't correct, but I do think that many ppl I know, from around me, who always voted for Democrats, their whole life, and are promising never ever to put a ballot with a D near it in the ballot box! We'll vote for the Republican always b/c the Dems went to the extreme left with Obama et al. That's the problem!

moshe said...

Tom, I usually love your analysis, but this time it is plain and simple wishfull thinking, great for living in denial! Face it Obama has vered too much to the left and even I as a Dem will never vote for Dems again, only Republicans! Obama embraced every radical leftist agenda issue! Now you'll all pay the price for a long time!

John from Taos said...

It is so bizarre that some people accuse Obama and the Democrats of being too left-wing and liberal. I have to think they've lost their minds.

He hasn't done one damned thing that's left-wing, much to my regret...

Anonymous said...

Wow, my perceptions are totally at odds with the comments.

As a Republican, I find the comments fascinating. While Obama campaigned as a liberal, he has been running a fairly centrist administration. He has kept most of Bush's policies, the bailout was a very business friendly affair. Even the health care bill is far to the right of what the majority in the country want (a public option).

I found Bush very effective, even though I disagreed with many of his policies (torture, Iraq). Obama/Dem majority... not so effective. Hence my current disdain.

moshe said...

John from Taos, I know that he hasn't accomplished the far-left policies, not b/c that he doesn't want, he wants to do that very badly, he was just met with ferocious opposition, to which he is incompetent to deal with. Period!

Sleeping Dog said...

Like Anon 12:09, I find it laughable that Obama is considered a liberal. Obama is to the right of David Cameron the leader of the UK Conservative party, French president Sarkozy, a member of France's conservative party or Andrea Merkel, Germany's prime minister and a member of the center-right Christian Democrats.

The liberal-Obama accusations really says more about how far to right the center of American conservatism is than it does about Obama. As I think about it, the predecessor whose public policies Obama's most resemble is none other than Richard Milhouse Nixon.

BTW, Obama's health care proposals are more conservative than Nixon's

boelee said...

TO anonymous (2nd comment) and moshe
You are both very right, to Obama's disappointment.
He wants to do this and that (closing gitmo, public option he promised in his campaign) but there's too many blocking his way, even amongst the Dem Senators self.
He wants to make a bigger bailout too but was forced to compromise to rightist and Republican wishes and scrap some of the good components (see some blogs in HufPost at that time, saying he would fail because the bailout was smaller than needed).
He is not left enough, so his agenda was dubious, not good enough to fulfill his campign wishesi

The Original Donald said...

I agree, I don't see Republicans controlling the 112th Congress, which will not be good for Obama's re-election hopes.

hawkhydro said...

change is most assuredly coming and not at taxpayers expense.see ya!can you say lame duck.....

Anonymous said...

It is utterly amazing to me that so many people don't understand why the Republican Party has such a low approval rating, yet is getting the votes necessary to win the elections, of late, that they have. For those that don't "get it", let me explain. Most former Republicans now refer to themselves as either independents or conservaties - only because they feel angry and disenfranchised with what the Republican Party (as it now is) has ideologically become. Most of those same people (including myself) feel as though the Republican Party has essentially lost touch with, and abandoned the core values and principles that they, at one time, supposedly stood for and represented. That is, smaller government, lower taxes, fiscal responsibility, adherence to family values, strong national defense, constitutional compliance, etc., etc. In doing so, they lost the support of many of those who once voted for them. But, don't get it twisted. These same people are so outraged by what Obama, his administration and the Democrats have done, that they have virtually reinvented a NEW Republican Party - one that actually represents them as they always wanted it to. Hence, the "Tea Party" - of which, in reality, is not really a political party at all - rather a collective repudiation of what politics, in general,has become. They nonetheless will vote Republican - and in rather large numbers. The difference being that, this time around, they will vote exclusively for the Republican who is considered most conservative - and furthest removed from the kind of Republican that is thought to be out of touch with conservative values. You'll notice that the Republican candidates are now referring to themselves as conservatves first, then and only then, Republican. And if they don't reflect conservative values - they are "gone". The litmus test for any Conservative - Republican candidate is now much, much tougher than it has been in the past. Believe me, when it is all said and done, there will be a political "bloodbath" this fall - and it will be at all levels of government. The Republicans will retake the Senate and House - for sure. Irrespective of what Obama does or doesn't do between now and the fall of 2012, I can, rather confidently so, predict that he will most certainly be made a one term President - irregardless of who the Republican is that will be running against him. For you Obamanites still living in your own little dream world, all that I can say to you is enjoy it while you can. Because soon enough the party will be over with. By the way, have any of you looked at the most recent Rassmussen poll, of which is, by far, the most accurate (historically proven) of all polls, Obama's approval versus disapproval ratig, amongst LIKELY voters is now at -11 and falling like a rock. Tsk-tsk-tsk!

 
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