You’ve probably seen the Gallup headline already, “Conservatives Remain the Largest Ideological Group in U.S.” But dig into the story a bit and the numbers get interesting:
Of registered Republicans, 71% call themselves “conservative” or “very conservative.” That says to me — at least at the grassroots — this is a party very much in tune with itself. The leadership doesn’t always reflect this. Although part of that is due to the lack of depth of the GOP bench, thanks to huge (and well-deserved) losses in 2006 and 2008.
But let’s look at the Democrats. 38% of the party is made up of self-described moderates, but an virtually equal number 39% — says that they’re “liberal” or “very liberal.” That’s a party with a serious fissure, waiting to be exploited. And considering just how liberal the party leadership is, should make the job even easier. Honestly, the Democratic party today is ripe for a political civil war.
So what’s the GOP doing to help push the Democrats along to a rupture, or even just to peel away some of those moderates? Dunno. Can’t tell that they’re doing anything at all.