This week, a Senate Republican aide said of the White House, “We just hope they leave without doing any more damage.”
If the aide was referring to damage to the Republican Party, it’s too late.
Public allegiance to the Republican Party has plunged during George W. Bush’s presidency, as attitudes have edged away from some of the conservative values that fueled GOP political victories, a major survey has found.
The survey, by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, found a “dramatic shift” in political party identification since 2002, when Republicans and Democrats were at rough parity. Now, 50% of those surveyed identified with or leaned toward Democrats, whereas 35% aligned with Republicans.
What’s more, the survey found, public attitudes are drifting toward Democrats’ values: Support for government aid to the disadvantaged has grown since the mid-1990s, skepticism about the use of military force has increased and support for traditional family values has decreased.
What was that Karl Rove was saying about a "permanent Republican majority"? Bruce Bartlett, a conservative analyst said, "It’s clear we have come to an end of a Republican conservative era."