Thursday, March 24, 2011

Happy Republicans

One of the most interesting outcomes of last fall's election results we're seeing in our polling right now is that Republican voters are a lot happier with their own party than they were over the course of last year.

Our national poll for Daily Kos this week found 63% of GOP voters approving of Congressional Republicans with 27% disapproving. To put those numbers into some perspective, our final national poll before last year's election found just 44% of Republicans expressing support for their party leadership in Washington to 38% who disagreed.

It's not just Congressional Republicans seeing a bump. Our poll for Kos last week found that 75% of Republican voters had a favorable opinion of their party in general, compared to only 16% with a negative one. Those are pretty impressive numbers given that last April we found only 54% of GOP voters liked the direction of their party while 22% dissented. Winning seems to have solved a lot of people's concerns.

The big winner in all of this? I think it's establishment Republican politicians. If the GOP base is more content with the party there's likely to be less of a focus next year on taking out incumbents in primaries. Just like the Democratic fever of 2008 was dulled in 2009 and 2010 because the party's voters got fat and happy because of their success, the anger level of Republicans seems likely to be down a notch from 2010. In a twisted way the Tea Party could become a victim of its own success- there just isn't likely to be the same sense of urgency about rooting out moderates in primaries and that sort of thing that there was when the party was completely out of power.

And in that sense the calming down of the Tea Party could ultimately work to the GOP's benefit-because it increases the likelihood of a Presidential nominee and nominees in key Senate races that has the ability to win in November.


conspiracy said...

Doesn't really jibe with your state polls though does it. Plenty of cases where primary voters want more conservative nominees.

Anonymous said...

As the GOP sheds its moderates, what remains is an enthusiastic cadre of staunch supporters excited at the prospect of America becoming a Christian and Corporate State. These are the true believers in the 'rightful' dominance of faith over reason and of the glory of unrestrained power of the rich over everyone else.

These people want a further purge of people 'not conservative enough' from their Party with the understanding that (because they tend to seek out like-minded associates and sources of news and opinion) anything liberal is evil. These people 'know' that America is on the brink of a new era of hierarchy and faith because they know nobody whose political or religious views disagree with theirs except for 'freaks' and 'radicals' as described by Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity, etc.

A good analogy is to alcoholics who claim that "Everyone drinks!", the perception depending upon the fact that alcoholics themselves heavily congregate in the booze-sodden world. The dirty secret is that such people avoid places in which sobriety is the norm.

Goldwater supporters in 1964 and McGovern Supporters in 1972 were the happiest people ever with their candidates. Of course, the moderates decide a Presidential election.

Anonymous said...

Hi PPP guys! :)

Any news on when ya'll will be releasing the results from the 2012 GOP race for either North Carolina or Michigan?

And who polled best against Obama in Michigan?

Thanks and keep up the great work!

I Am Iron Man said...

I agree that this is good news for the GOP establishment. If GOP primary voters are willing to go along with a less insane GOP presidential nominee then they have a chance of beating Obama.

But if they pick a complete loon like Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann or a terribly unlikable SOB like Newt Gingrich then they have no chance at all.


And of course this goes for Senate primaries too. For example if they leave Olympia Snowe alone then she'll easily win reelection but if they take her out that seat will likely go Democratic.

Dustin Ingalls said...

"And of course this goes for Senate primaries too. For example if they leave Olympia Snowe alone then she'll easily win reelection but if they take her out that seat will likely go Democratic."

...only if Snowe retires after her primary defeat and doesn't run as an independent. If she does the latter, she wins easily, as our poll from a few weeks ago showed. Basically, if Snowe's on the ballot, she's a shoo-in.

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