Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Republicans in Disarray

The Republican Party may have a big election year anyway, but Americans sure don't think much of it or its leadership.

Only 28% of voters in the country say they approve of the current direction of the GOP with 51% disapproving. Even among voters who identify with the party just 54% say they like where it's headed. It's predictable that Democrats would give it very low marks but even among independents just 18% think the Republicans are headed in the right direction while 49% dissent.

One person who's not doing the party any favors is Michael Steele. Only 10% of Americans have a favorable opinion of him while 33% see him unfavorably. Even in his own party a plurality of voters have a negative view of him, with 19% saying they have an unfavorable opinion of him to 15% with a positive one.

Any thought that having Steele as the chair might help the party reach out to African Americans can be tossed away- only 5% of them have a favorable opinion of him to 53% with a negative one.

Mitch McConnell and John Boehner aren't real popular either, but they do better than Steele. Each of them is seen favorably by 15% of Americans, with 25% in Boehner's case and 26% in McConnell's viewing each of them in a negative light. They both at least, in contrast to Steele, are generally held in positive regard by Republicans. It's a 28/9 spread for Boehner and a 25/8 one for McConnell.

The GOP is a mess right now, defined by weak and unpopular leaders who have most voters thinking the party's headed in the wrong direction. The fact that the party is still likely to fare well in 2010 speaks to just how cranky the electorate is and how dimly it views the Democratic leadership.

Full results here


Unknown said...

A party, especially one that doesn't have the Presidency or congress, doesn't need to be defined with a leader. It needs to be defined on what it stands for. For eight years the Republican Party was defined not by what it believed in, but by George W. Bush, someone who stuck to few Republican positions. It's far more important to find a candidate who supports your principles than principles that support a leader.

Anonymous said...

I think Michael Steele's doing an awesome job!

But I'm not a Republican.

Christian Liberty said...

PPP, you're forgetting your own finding that those who disapprove of both parties prefer Republicans in a generic matchup by margins of roughly 3 to 1.

The reason Republicans have such strong disapprovals is that they have governed too far to the left.

If Republicans govern according to Tea Party - limited government - principles, the approvals will soar. The reason the Republicans' numbers are still low is that they have previously acted too much like Democrats.

Christian Liberty said...

The Tea Party is growing... from 16% of voters a month ago to 24% of voters now. (RR, Apr 13)

And support for REPEAL of Obamacare is growing... from 54% to 58% of LV, including 50% who STRONGLY favor repeal. (RR, Apr 12)

Low support for the Republican establishment would only be a concern if establishment candidates are nominated, rather than the Tea Party candidates supported by an increasingly energized, popular, and diverse grassroots.

What we are witnessing is similar to the late 1970s, when the Republican party simultaneously moved to the right and won the general elections: challenging Ford in 1976, electing congressional conservatives in 1978, and electing Reagan in 1980. Then, as now, Republican candidates will win because they are differentiating themselves from the "pale pastels" of the RNC, running on the "bold colors" of the "new Republican party".

Anonymous said...


How many independents and Democrats did you poll for the GOP primary in North Carolina?

Chuck S said...

Exactly what I've been saying, America isn't voting for Republican's, they are voting against Democrats. Not exactly a mandate on anything...

David said...

It is a mandate to stop the socialism. The problem America has with Republican leaders is that they don't inspire anyone. What do they want to accomplish besides being back in the majority?

That is why Americans like people like Ryan, Bachman, Romney, Huckabee, and Rubio. They want a new Republican party much like 94.

The candidates are more popular than the leadership. That is why it doesn't matter.

The GOP is not in disarray. It is in a dynamic rebirth. That may be messy and noisy, but it is going one direction with a purpose.

Unknown said...

In 2006 and 2008 America voted against Republicans, not for Democrats. The Democrats are governing according to their party principles and independents are surprised by this for some reason.

Anonymous said...

"Repulicans in Disarray" ??? In a generic poll, Rasmussen (4/13/10)had the Republicans up by 9% over the Democrats. In another recent Rasmussen poll Republicans were most trusted over Democrats in 9 out of the 10 most pressing issues now facing the American people. In respects to the leadership of the GOP having such low approval ratings - how about Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid? Worse! Lets face it, the overall approval ratings of BOTH parties - politicians in general, are all looking rather bleak. Cut the numbers as you may Tom, but personally, if I were to put my money on which party I thought most likely to succeed in November and again in 2012, it would, without a doubt, be the Republican Party. As far as I'm concerned, given the current (politically driven) mood of the American people, I would consider that to be a no-brainer. Wouldn't you? Next time Tom, try doing some comparative polling between the two parties. It could be rather enlightening, if not schockingly so, for a whole bunch of folks out here. But, then again too, maybe a little reality check might be in order here. Ya think?

Christian Liberty said...

It is not just Rasmussen that has the Republican lead in the generic congressional poll at multi-year highs (among Likely voters).

Gallup has the Republican lead in the generic congressional poll at all-time highs (among Registered voters). On Gallup, Republicans only usually led in this generic ballot in Republican landslide years like 1994 or 2002, although data goes back to 1950.

Gallup confirms the Rasmussen data. In the past 60 years, Americans have never preferred Republicans by greater margins than they do now.

Anonymous said...

24% of voters are ignorant TeaBaggers? That's a hoot!

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