Thursday, August 15, 2013

The 40 Year Republican Surge

With all the talk about The Emerging Democratic Majority it is easy to flinch before the jabs from the mainstream media that the Republican Party is Doomed, Doomed.

Or maybe not.  After all, what is a four point presidential win in 2012 telling us?  That President Obama ain't that popular, pal.

Now RealClear's invaluable Sean Trende has written a three parter on the Republicans: Are Elections Decided by Chance?, Are Republicans Really Out of Step?, and What If Party Makovers Don't Work? He argues that the reports on the death of the Republican Party have been grossly exaggerated.

In part one he shows that it almost looks as if elections are won by chance or the state of the economy. In part two he argues that Republicans and Democrats are not perceived by the voters as getting more extreme over time.  In fact the voters saw Romney as closer to their own political ideology than Barack Obama.  In part three he shows that party makeovers don't seem to make a lick of difference.

The takeaway chart for me was this one about party strength since 1945.
If you ask me the chart shows that the Republicans have been slowly growing in party strength at the state and national levels over the last 40 years since the nadir of the late 1970s.

You take a look at the chart and tell me: the chart, with all its noise and backing and filling shows a steady increase in GOP party strength.  Typically, of course, GOP strength improves towards the end of a Democratic presidency and declines towards the end of a Republican presidency.  But then there are the exceptions.

For all the noise the Democrats are making about taking back the House in 2014 it would be a bloody miracle if they did.  Maybe, after all, there will be a big bounce in the economy; maybe Obamacare will implement much better than expected.  Maybe the Republicans will get demolished by accusations of racism.

But I doubt it.  Much more likely is that we will see the rise of "privacy moms" uneasy about their cell-phone conversations ending up at the NSA and their health records getting hacked at the IRS.  Much more likely is the continuing disenchantment of the young 'uns realizing that they are the patsies of the Obamis, with unaffordable student debt and unaffordable health insurance and a lousy job market.  Much more likely is a gradual demoralization of the African American voters that have turned out so loyally for a president of their own race.

But all this is mere speculation.  For the reality we have to wait for November 2014 and November 2016 when the voters will speak.

Then it will be time to start the makeover lament all over again.  For the losing party of 2014 and 2016.

1 comment:

  1. In advanced civilizations the period loosely called Alexandrian is usually associated with flexible morals, perfunctory religion, populist standards and cosmopolitan tastes, feminism, exotic cults, and the rapid turnover of high and low fads—in short, a falling away (which is all that decadence means) from the strictness of traditional rules, embodied in character and inforced from within. — Jacques Barzun