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					     the SuRvey of the ModeRn
                                                       1. The state of the Republican Party is:
                                                       Great. Things were tough, but               Solid. We’re a unified party and
                                                       we’re back and as strong as the                we’ve got a few image prob-
                                                       Democrats in most parts of the             lems that we could work on, but
                                                       country. 13%*                                our fundamental beliefs are as
                                                                                                  strong and relevant as ever. 61%

     With midterm primary season offi-
     cially under way, we’ve been hear-
     ing a lot of talk lately about what
     it means to be a real Republican.
     So what’s the consensus? Beats us.
     That’s why we asked seventy-five
     leaders of the GOP—current and for-
     mer members of Congress, former
     Cabinet officials, state elected offi-            Shaky. It’s not just image
     cials, county party chairmen, and                 problems—we’re losing
                                                       ground with key constitu-
                                                                                                           Terrible. We’ve got prob-
                                                                                                            lems with the party—big
     GOP bigwigs from across the coun-                 encies (Hispanics, women,                        ones—and we need to have
                                                                                                           a major reassessment of
     try—to fill out a short anonymous                 younger voters), and we need
                                                       to make some adjustments to                      what we should stand for in
     survey about policy, politics, and per-           the party platform. 22%                          the twenty-first century. 4%

     sonalities. From Bush being right on              2. Which of the following statements best describes your essential
     Iraq and Obama being a socialist to               philosophy as a Republican?
     their thoughts on immigration and                 You’re a fiscal conservative: You believe, above all, that the primary
                                                       emphasis of the party should be on lower taxes, free markets, and lim-
     gay marriage, they give us a view of              ited government regulation. 75%
     the party that’s both predictable and             You’re a social conservative: You believe, above all, in defending tra-
                                                       ditional values. 8%
     surprising. See for yourself.                     You’re a national-security conservative: You believe the Republican
                                                       party is, above all, the party of national defense. 6%
                                                       You’re a libertarian: You believe, above all, that government should
     WITH RepoRTIng bY AllIe ToWnsenD AnD MARk MIkIn   just leave hardworking people alone. 11%

88   e sq 03•10                                            * Because   o f ro u n d i n g , n ot a l l p e rc e n tag e s a d d u p to 100.
    3. In the elections this fall, what               5. You’ve been given the opportunity to nominate the Republican of the Year—a person whose values
    is the one topic that members                     best reflect your Republican Party. Whom would you choose?
    of the Republican Party should
    spend the most time talking

    Lowering taxes 7%

    Strengthening national
    security 1%
                                                      Senator Mitch              Representative            Former vice-               Rush Limbaugh
                                                      McConnell                  John Boehner              president Dick Cheney      8%
    Shrinking government 55%                          7%                         11%                       11%
                                                      None of the above/Other 64%
                                                      Notable write-ins: John McCain (three times), Sarah Palin (four times), Newt Gingrich (twice), Tom Coburn
                                                      (twice), Governor Bob McDonnell (twice), Tom Ridge, Eric Cantor, Charlie Crist, “I am offended by these
    Protecting traditional values                     choices.”
                                                      6. You’ve been given the opportunity to kick one person out of the party—his or her values simply aren’t
                                                      compatible with the Republican Party as you see it. Whom would you choose?

    None of the above/Other 35%
    Notable write-ins: Job creation,
    job creation, job creation.

    4. Whom would you
    most like to see at
    the top of the ticket
    in the 2012 elections?

                                                      Senator Olympia            Representative Michele   Colin Powell             Glenn Beck
          Former governor Sarah                       Snowe                      Bachmann 7%              15%                      12%
               Palin 12%                              30%
                                                      None of the above/Other 37%
                                                      Notable write-ins: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Steve King, “We need to grow our tent, not shrink it.”

       Governor Tim Pawlenty 13%                      7. Which of the following do you believe to be the number-one threat
                                                      to America’s national security?
                                                                                                                                                   A revitalized

                                                                                         A nuclear
                                                                                          Iran or
                                                                                        North Korea

      Former governor Mitt Romney

           Former governor Mike
              Huckabee 8%

                                                                                                                          An ascendant
                                                                            Violent nonstate
                                                                               actors (i.e.,
                                                                           terrorists, pirates,
                                                                            drug traffickers)
      None of the above/Other 36%
       Notable write-ins: Ron Paul,
      David Petraeus, Haley Barbour,
          Mitch Daniels (twice).

i c o n s a n d m a p by a lway s w i t h h o n o r                                                                                                                89
            The Sur vey of the Modern Republican Party

 8. If you could poach one player from the other team, which of
 the following Democrats would make a useful addition to the
 Republican Party?
 Warren Buffett
 David Axelrod
 Hillary Clinton
 Oprah Winfrey
 No, thanks. You
 can keep ’em.

                                                                        11. In a poll released by Public Policy Poll-
                                                                        ing in early August, just 32 percent of Repub-
                                                                        licans in Virginia believe that Barack Obama
                                                                        was born in the United States. How would
                                                                        you characterize the role of the so-called
                                                                        “birthers” in the Republican Party?
                                                                        They’re the base. 2%
 9. Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck have become controversial              They’re the fringe. 87%
 figures in our national dialogue. In your opinion, they should:
 Keep talking. They’re speaking for millions of Americans who feel
                                                                        They’re the mainstream. 12%
 frustrated with the government’s current policies. 71%
 Tone it down a little. They’re smart entertainers, but some of their   12. Who was the better       13. Do you
 rhetoric risks alienating moderate and independent voters. 23%         president?                   consider Barack
 Shut up. They don’t speak for mainstream Republicans, and they’re
 scaring people. 6%
                                                                                                     Obama a socialist?

 10. Michael Steele’s chairmanship of the
 Republican Party has been:
 A success. 17%                                                                                                Yes 78%
 Pretty good, with a few rough patches. 55%
 A disaster, but what did you expect? He got
 dealt a bad hand. 8%
 A disaster. The guy is inept. 4%
 None of the above. 16%

                                                                                                             No 22%

                                                                                                     14. Given what you’ve seen so
                                                                                                     far, do you consider Barack
                                                                                                     Obama to be a better or worse
                                                                                                     president than Bill Clinton?

                                                                                                     Better. 1%

                                                                                                     Worse. 70%
                                                                          George            George
                                                                           H. W.              W.     Obama may be the
                                                                           Bush              Bush    worst president we’ve
                                                                           53%              47%      ever had. 29%

90   e sq 03•10
15. Do you believe that the fight against gay marriage should be among the highest priorities of
the Republican Party?
Yes. It’s a critical issue and we must remain vigilant in defending traditional values and practices.


No. It’s a distraction from more important conversations we should be having about national security and fiscal responsibility.


16. Do you agree that the United          18. Do you agree that a flat tax          22. Would you consider sup-               23. Do you believe that climate
States should commit as many              on all Americans would be the             porting a pro-choice candi-               change is man-made?
troops and resources as nec-              best way to reform the federal            date in a local, state, or nation-        Yes 17%
essary to defeat the Taliban in           tax code?                                 al election?                              No 83%

                                                                                     Yes No
Yes 78%                                                                                                                       24. Describe your preferred
No 23%                                                                                                                        makeup of the Republican
                                                                                                                              membership of Congress:
17. Do you agree that                                                                                                         More moderates with a larger
America has the right                                                                                                         but more ideologically diverse
                                                                                                                              caucus. 57%
to impose its will on                                                                                                         Fewer moderates with a small-
sovereign countries
when its interests are
concerned?                                    Yes 65%            No 35%
                                                                                    67% 33%                                   er but more ideologically consis-
                                                                                                                              tent caucus. 43%

                                          19. Would you, under any cir-             25. When it comes to its racial and ethnic
                                          cumstances, support a tax in-             makeup, the Republican Party is:
                                          crease on any or all Americans
                                          over the next twelve months?
                                          Yes 4%
                                          No 96%
              Yes 59%
                                          20. Would you support tempo-
                                          rary work programs and other
                                          methods of “earned legaliza-
                                          tion” for illegal immigrants?
                                          Yes 52%
              No 42%                      No 48%

21. Which of the following best describes
President George W. Bush’s decision to
invade Iraq in 2003?
The right decision. 71%
The wrong decision. 29%

                                                                                    More diverse than         Not diverse enough.          Who cares?
                                                                                    the mainstream            We could do more             People are people.
                                                                                    media gives it            to appeal to certain         Let’s leave
                                                                                    credit for.               racial and ethnic            identity politics to
                                                                                    33%                       demographics.                the Democrats.
                                                                                                              31%                          36%

s o w h at ’ s t h e c o n s e n s u s ? Based on our survey, conducted over the course of six weeks last fall and administered with a guarantee of anonymity to all
participants, three out of four leaders of the Republican Party consider Barack Obama to be a socialist. More than one in four consider him the worst president of
all time. Sixty-seven percent would consider supporting a pro-choice candidate. Seventy-one percent think W. made the right call in Iraq. No one really likes taxes
or the birthers. And a lot of people like Mitt Romney. ≥


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