Despite all the rhetoric we’re hearing from the left about how the current “anti-incumbent” vibe doesn’t really translate to concern over actual political policy, it seems that the Democratic Party is in a bit of trouble over the whole forcing through legislation that the majority of the country didn’t want thing.
Americans’ favorable rating of the Democratic Party dropped to 41% in a late March USA Today/Gallup poll, the lowest point in the 18-year history of this measure. Favorable impressions of the Republican Party are now at 42%, thus closing the gap between the two parties’ images that has prevailed for the past four years.
Gallup last measured party images in late August/early September of last year. At that point, the Democratic Party enjoyed an 11-point favorable image advantage over the Republican Party. Now, the favorable ratings of the two parties are essentially tied.
The images of the two major parties have particular significance in a midterm election year. For example, the favorable rating of the Democratic Party exceeded that of the Republican Party by 52% to 37% just prior to the 2006 midterm elections, in which the Democrats gained 31 House seats.
Americans’ current 41% favorable rating of the Democratic Party is five points lower than the party’s previous low, recorded twice in 2005.
Apart from a brief moment in 2005 when they were at net zero, not once in 18 years did the Democrats’ own favorable rating fall into negative territory — until halfway through last year, right around the time the great ObamaCare debate began. Follow the link to Gallup’s report and note how the trends in party favorables correspond to that. Among independents, the Dems are rock steady at 47 percent until last summer, when the bottom suddenly drops out; similarly, Republican support for the GOP was on a steady slide until precisely the same point, when it suddenly rebounded by 20 points in just three months. One of the great what-ifs for future historians will be what might have happened if The One had held off on O-Care and focused instead on jobs and, say, deficit reduction. Would that have cemented the sweeping gains made by Democrats in 2006 and 2008? Would it have increased his political capital to the point where he’d now be in position to ram through an even more liberal health-care bill? The choice to do what he did when he did it really was, as the man said, a big f***ing deal.
Clifton B. at Another Black Conservative has more:
Democrats should take note of these numbers. Unlike Rasmussen, which only polls registered voters, Gallup polls all adults. The all adults method is always more favorable to Democrats. For Gallup to find such a significant drop in favorability for Democrats should set off all sorts of alarms for the left.
I don’t think that the current Democratic leadership will be concerned with these findings. That is because they long ago agreed to trade the party’s viability for lasting progressive change. For hardcore ideologues like Obama and Pelosi the Democrat Party is expendable if America is permanently stuck with the European socialist model.
The Democrats are still pretending that Obamacare is grand and glorious, but the people aren’t having it. And it is costing the Democratic Party dearly. But as Clifton points out, the Democratic leadership doesn’t seem to care, even as Democratic congressmen retire because they doubt their own chances of winning. They do seem to be banking on the fact that it may prove so difficult to reverse the policies they are forcing through that it may not matter if the Democratic Party’s reputation is destroyed for the next 20 years or so.