The Republican culture war is coming to a slow, painful death, as larger numbers of Americans support gay marriage, immigration reform and gun control. Forty-seven percent of Americans now disagree with the Republican Party’s approach to cultural and social issues according to a new poll.
By 47 percent to 22 percent, Americans say they disagree with the GOP’s approach to social and cultural issues, according to a new NBC/WSJ poll. There’s a thirty-eight percent-to-37 percent margin of those who disagree with the Democrats approach to social and cultural issues. While neither number is great, the Republicans have a whopping 47% of the respondents disagreeing with their approach on cultural/social issues.
Asked what they thought of when they hear the terms “social and cultural issues”, the highest response at 22% indicated that they think of gay rights,15% think of tolerance, 8% of abortion, 7% of race equality and “illegal immigrants”, while at the bottom 1% lay legalization of marijuana, environmental issues, feeding the hungry, American values, and a better standard of living.
Six percent think of civil rights/equal rights, while an equal number think of “handouts/welfare”. Five percent think of gun rights, while Christian values comes in at 3%, alongside family and creation of jobs.
Bear in mind that 74% of the respondents were white, while just 12% were black, 3% were Asian and within “other” at 4%, just 5% were Hispanic. In other words, they polled a disproportional amount of whites. When just 22% of predominately white respondents disagree with your approach to social issues and your party is comprised of mostly whites, you’ve got a large problem. Republicans have lost the culture war, they just refuse to face this fact.
This poll comes on the heels of the letter conservative groups wrote to the Republican National Committee, insisting that the party not change its discriminatory platform against same-sex marriage. The number one issue for Americans in terms of social and cultural issues was gay rights at 22%, so that suggests that the strongly negative reaction to the Republican Party’s approach is being colored by their discriminatory approach to gay rights.
Democrats used to live in fear of the God, Guns, and Gays chants of the Republican Party, but the times are changing. Republicans are now caught in the middle of an inner-party civil war on the very cultural issues that have defined the party and served as a reliable get out the vote mechanism. If they continue catering to the extremist social positions falling out of favor with the majority of Americans, they can’t win national elections, but if they soften on social issues they lose the only reliable vote other than the top 1%.
The time has come to see if the Republican Party can pull itself up by its own bootstraps in order to compete successfully in the market they claim to love so much. If not, they’ll have to lay in the bed of intolerance they so gleefully made during the their heyday of yesteryears.
Image: Veracity Stew