Friday, October 07, 2005
Why Democrats lose and Republicans win.
. . .[I]n Off Center Hacker and Pierson also provide a ton of evidence that, congressional results notwithstanding, Americans haven't become any more conservative over the past three decades. Nor has the activist base of the Democratic party become more liberal. Rather, it's the activist base of the Republican party that's gotten more extreme. The chart on the right, my favorite from the book, shows the startling story: compared to independent voters, Republican activists have gotten far more extreme since 1980, while over the same period the Democratic base has actually become more moderate. In other words, contra Galston and Kamarck, the liberal base is not really the problem a lot of people make it out to be. It's the Republican base that's far outside the mainstream. And yet, Republicans keep on winning anyway. But why? How is it that a party can continue to drift farther and farther from the center of American politics -- the Holy Grail of most political strategists -- and yet continue to be successful? Why is the center no longer holding?
Why do Republicans keep on winning Drum asks. For the precise reason the Netroots has advocated for a Fighting Dems strategy -- Democrats have been afraid to call the Republican Party extreme, even though it is. Democrats have been afraid to fight for their mainstream principles.full post @ daily kos