Is America still a center-right country? AEI Political Report, December 2012

Is America still a center-right country? The data point to America as solidly centrist. This issue of Political Report examines self-reported ideological identification of adults and voters over time, views on social issues, attitudes on moral issues, and opinions on the role of government. It also explore whether the Republican brand is damaged and presents some closing data points on the 2012 election. Here are some highlights: 

• The number of liberals in the electorate reached an all-time high in 2012 (25 percent), and the number of conservatives came very close to the all-time high point (36 percent in 1984 and 35 percent in 2012). Yet, Moderates still make up the largest segment of the vote. 

• On economic issues, 46 percent of Americans identify as conservative, while 20 percent say they are liberal. On social issues, 38 percent say they are conservative while 28 percent say they are liberal. 

• In recent surveys on issues such as gay marriage, Americans have moved in a more liberal direction on the policy questions, even as they say that for them personally, the behavior is morally wrong. Half believe that marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized as valid, while 52 percent believe sex between two adults of the same gender is morally wrong. 

• Most Americans have long embraced social welfare programs for the poor as an important government responsibility. In a fall 2012 Public Religion Research Institute poll, 63 percent agreed that government policies aimed at helping the poor serve as a critical safety net. 

• Republicans have lost the popular vote for president in five of the past six elections. Current poll responses show a GOP deficit as well. In October, 44 percent said they had negative feelings about the Republican Party, and 39 percent said they had positive ones.

• Satisfaction with the candidates in 2012 was high, and voters felt they learned enough during the campaign to make an informed choice. Two-thirds said the debates were helpful.

 

Is America Still a Center-Right Country? AEI Political Report, December 2012

Also Visit
AEIdeas Blog The American Magazine
About the Author

 

Karlyn
Bowman

 

Andrew
Rugg

 

Jennifer K.
Marsico

What's new on AEI

To secure southern border, US must lead international effort to stabilize Central America
image The Ryan pro-work, anti-poverty plan: Thomas Aquinas 1, Ayn Rand 0
image Does SNAP support work? Yes and no
image Obama Democrats lose their big bet on health exchanges
AEI on Facebook
Events Calendar
  • 21
    MON
  • 22
    TUE
  • 23
    WED
  • 24
    THU
  • 25
    FRI
Monday, July 21, 2014 | 9:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Closing the gaps in health outcomes: Alternative paths forward

Please join us for a broader exploration of targeted interventions that provide real promise for reducing health disparities, limiting or delaying the onset of chronic health conditions, and improving the performance of the US health care system.

Monday, July 21, 2014 | 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Comprehending comprehensive universities

Join us for a panel discussion that seeks to comprehend the comprehensives and to determine the role these schools play in the nation’s college completion agenda.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 | 8:50 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Who governs the Internet? A conversation on securing the multistakeholder process

Please join AEI’s Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy for a conference to address key steps we can take, as members of the global community, to maintain a free Internet.

Thursday, July 24, 2014 | 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Expanding opportunity in America: A conversation with House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan

Please join us as House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) unveils a new set of policy reforms aimed at reducing poverty and increasing upward mobility throughout America.

Thursday, July 24, 2014 | 6:00 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.
Is it time to end the Export-Import Bank?

We welcome you to join us at AEI as POLITICO’s Ben White moderates a lively debate between Tim Carney, one of the bank’s fiercest critics, and Tony Fratto, one of the agency’s staunchest defenders.

Event Registration is Closed
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled today.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.