In a shocking (I repeat, SHOCKING!) development, the American people realize that the Democrats and Barack Obama…are too liberal.
Yeah, I know…and the sky is blue.
According to a new Gallup poll, 49% of Americans now feel the Democrat Party is out of the mainstream and to the left of the public. 38% feel the Democrats are in line with the mainstream.
Republican numbers are slightly better, with 41% believing they are too conservative, while 40% believe they are in line with the American people. That is a significant improvement for the party over the past 2 years.
The 49% mark is important. Why? That is one point below the highest mark ever…that being 50%, immediately before the 1994 elections where Republicans took Congress.
This explains a multitude of problems for the Democrats. First, they currently have a President that not only lacks coattails…but may be a significant drag on the ticket. Bill Clinton is being asked to come and campaign for many moderate Democrats in lieu of Obama, simply because he is more popular with the mainstream of Americans.
Secondly, Democrats have a serious problem with the middle. In 2008, independents were narrowly split 43/40 in thinking that the Democratic Party ideological position was “about right.” Now they have a 19-point deficit among independents, 33/52. That shows that independents are either leaving the Democrats for Republicans, or worst case for conservatives, will simply ignore both parties. That is a virtual victory for Republicans at the ballot box.
Nancy Pelosi and White House operatives have long argued that they will have a ‘It’s Bush’s Fault!’ strategy for the midterms. Pelosi reiterated that in an interview last week on NBC. This shows that strategy is unlikely to have any significant traction, because it is no longer Republicans, but Democrats, who are perceived to be out of the mainstream.
So what do Democrats do to turn the tide? I don’t think there is any realistic option. Look at the issues Democrats wanted to bring up before the election: Cap-and-Trade, immigration reform, and greater financial regulation and taxes. None of those are going to make them look less liberal in the eyes of the American people.