Bad News For Republicans: Poll Shows Voters Souring On GOP
The race for the Republican 2008 Presidential nomination is on — but a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll suggests the highly sought prize may be in danger of becoming a booby prize:
The race for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination has become wide open, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll shows. But the value of winning it has fallen sharply.
The survey shows that without formally entering the race, former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson has risen to second place in the Republican field. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani continues to leak support, but leads the pack with 29% to Mr. Thompson’s 20%, while former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has pulled even with Sen. John McCain at 14%.
So it’s good news for Fred, troubling news for Rudy — and extremely troubling news for anyone with an “R” in front of their party affilitiation:
Of greater concern for Republicans generally, however, is the party’s weak state heading into the 2008 election. By 52% to 31%, Americans say they want Democrats to win the presidency next year.
Americans give the Republican Party their most negative assessment in the two-decade history of the Journal/NBC survey, and by 49% to 36% they say the Democratic Party more closely shares their values and positions on the issues.
“The political environment for Republicans continues to erode,” says Republican pollster Neil Newhouse, who conducts the Journal/NBC survey with Democratic counterpart Peter Hart. A long-term worry for the party: Republican gains among the Hispanic constituency, long a target for President Bush, have vanished at a time when Washington is enmeshed in a debate over immigration policy.
The party’s woes can be partly traced to the political decline of President Bush. His approval rating in the Journal/NBC survey has fallen to its lowest ever, 29%, while 66% of Americans disapprove of his performance. The telephone survey of 1,008 adults, conducted June 8-11, has a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points.
Unless something changes GWB will likely go down in history as the person who decimated the Ronald Reagan Republican revolution coalition.
That is, if the Democrats don’t shoot themselves so badly in the foot that they’re limping and the Republicans on crutches beat them in the 2008 race. And will disgust over both parties lead to a viable third party alternative?