A new Gallup survey released Tuesday reveals that America has become more conservative, while Democrats have tilted farther to the left, and conservatives outnumber liberals 36 to 25 percent.
According to Gallup, since the polling organization began measuring the political ideology of Americans back in 1992, those who identify as conservatives have varied between 36 and 40 percent. The percentage of self-identified liberals has hovered around 17 to 25 percent.
One more interesting, and perhaps startling, revelation from the new Gallup survey is that there has been a “sharp increase in liberals among white Democrats, from 32% in 2001 to 50% in 2016.” The result is what Gallup calls an “ideological separation between white and nonwhite Democrats.
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“Over the same period, the percentage of nonwhites identifying as liberal increased only nine percentage points, from 27% to 36%,” Gallup reported.
What is going on here? Have white Democrats become the party sub-set that reaches out to non-whites only during political campaigns?
Evidence in this philosophical and political shift can be seen in the way Democrats have lost seats in Congress, state legislatures and even governorships. Republicans now outnumber Democrats in all of those areas, with liberals holding onto the northeast and west coasts. But in “fly over America,” there is a lot of red while pockets of blue seem to be shrinking.
According to Gallup, “Most of the long-term change in Americans’ political views occurred after 2000 and can be explained by one overarching factor — an increasing likelihood of Democrats (including independents who lean Democratic) to self-identify as liberal. Democratic liberal identification has increased by about one percentage point each year, from 30% in 2001 to 44% in 2016. As a result, liberalism now ranks as the top ideological group among Democrats.”
How long this lasts may at least be partly determined by what Republicans do with this political power. The Associated Press reported Tuesday that after the 115th Congress is sworn in, Republicans will launch “an aggressive campaign…to dismantle eight years of President Barack Obama’s Democratic policies.”
They aren’t even waiting for the man to leave the White House. His agenda pretty much in tatters, Obama will suffer the indignation of seeing any hope of a legacy essentially picked apart.