Gallup yesterday posted the results of a very interesting poll that shows far more Americans self-identifying in a conservative direction than in a liberal direction. Brian Faughnan at Red State has it about right concerning the broad message of the poll:
I think itâ€™s a growing distrust of what they view as the liberal agenda of this Congress and this president.
At the same time, when you break down the poll on an issue-by-issue basis, Rossputin makes a great case that on most issues Americans are tending to move in a libertarian direction. It’s hard to say how much the broad shift against environmental policies that harm the economy and against restrictive immigration policies are the result of our current economic situation versus a genuine ideological awakening, but there is reason for optimism.
No shift is bigger than the 10-point swing of more people acknowledging the government has too much power. But the 7-point upticks in a pro-life direction and against health care coverage as a government responsibility also are encouraging signs.
A particularly acute observation made by Gallup as a result of the mass of survey data:
And for those seeking to understand why the Republican Party suffered such major election losses, they may find that political ideology has very little to do with it.
What would this have to tell us about Mr. Curtis and the significance of his decision to leave the GOP behind?
The polling news, if generally true of Colorado as it is of the nation as a whole, would show that a candidate like Ryan Frazier is well in sync with the electorate and well-positioned to make a strong showing against appointed incumbent Senator Michael Bennet. As for Frazier or any other Republican candidate at the state or national level, Rossputin makes a point about 2010 campaign themes that ought not be ignored:
…namely that if theyâ€™re going to keep any focus on â€œsocial issues”, if they want to win elections they will have to make those issues secondary to issues of liberty, economic and otherwise.
I would add a caveat: In some districts and states, the GOP can make plenty of hay out of certain social issues by highlighting the Far Left push of Obama and the ruling Democrats as being out of touch. Politically speaking, though, if the overwhelming need to take a strong pro-liberty stance hasn’t become apparent enough by now, the new Gallup poll results should bring it into crystal clarity.