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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Democrats Have Moved Left

Karlyn Bowman, Eleanor O'Neil, and Heather Sims report at AEI:

Ideological identification
  • Democrats move left: In 2000, 29 percent of Democrats identified as liberal; in 2015, 45 percent gave that response (Gallup). Among white Democratic registered voters, 28 percent identified as liberal in 2000. In 2015, the percentage who gave that response had jumped to 50 percent (Pew).
  • Democrats in 2016: Thirty-six percent of Democrats would like to see their party nominate a liberal for president, while 40 percent would prefer a moderate (Gallup). One-third of registered voters who would vote in a Democratic primary would prefer the next president’s goals and policies be much more or somewhat more liberal than those of Barack Obama (Pew).
  • Republicans in 2016: Sixty percent of Republicans would like to see their party nominate a conservative for president, almost unchanged from 2007, when 64 percent gave that response (NBC News/The Wall Street Journal). An equal proportion of Republican registered primary voters (43 percent) say they want the next president to be more conservative than George W. Bush and about the same as he was (NBC News/The Wall Street Journal).

Primaries, primaries, primaries
  • Six big ones: More than 20 percent of each party’s pledged delegates will be allocated during the March primaries in Georgia, Texas, Michigan, Florida, Illinois, and Ohio. Exit polls from the 2008 and 2012 primaries show that in most of these states, pluralities of primary voters are college graduates, although Midwestern state voters have less formal education. In two states in 2008, Georgia and Texas, the Democratic primary electorates were majority-minority. GOP contests were largely white and, in southern states, heavily evangelical