Pew Typology Study
by Chris Bowers, Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:38:54 AM EDT
Pop % Reg % Turnout Bush Kerry Republicans Enterprisers 9 11 93 92 1 Social Cons 11 13 90 86 4 Pro-Gov Cons 9 10 73 61 12 Middle Upbeats 11 13 77 63 14 Disaffecteds 9 10 63 42 21 Bystanders 10 0 3 NA NA Democrats Con Dens 14 15 79 14 65 Dis Dems 10 10 84 2 82 Liberals 17 19 63 2 81I am not really sure why "Upbeats" aren't just considered Republicans.
Democrats are able to stay close because their groups are larger. In fact, Liberals and Conservative Democrats are the two largest groups, and are equal to the size of the three Republican groups, Enterprisers, Social Conservatives, and Pro-Government Conservatives, combined. Republicans are able to maintain their edge largely through their overwhelming strength among the two "middle" groups that are politically engaged: Upbeats and Disaffecteds. It is worth noting that Liberals are not only the largest group, but also the fastest growing. Since 1999, they have doubled in size.
Turnout did in act slightly favor Republicans. By my calculations from the numbers above, had the turnout between all groups except "Bystanders" been equal to their levels of the population, then Bush probably would have won a very, very narrow popular vote victory, but also probably have lost the electoral college (maybe 284-254, with Iowa, New Mexico and Ohio switching). Certainly, there would have been extensive overtime. While it certainly isn't a cure-all for the crushing and systematic problems with the Democratic Party, we can never ignore the importance of improving turnout among our base.
As the graphic on the right illustrates, when it comes to determining the difference in outlook between the two parties, national security is by far the clearest difference:In an era when virtually all political issues are seen through partisan lenses, the political typology still finds numerous value cleavages in American society, many of which cut across party lines. In fact, public values about security and the use of military force are among the only value dimensions in which Republican and Democratic groups clearly align on opposite sides, and, even here, the intensity of opinion differs significantly within each coalition. Overall, the analysis finds that the intense partisan divide over security and military assertiveness is the exception, and not the rule. In most cases, there are fissures within the party coalitions that are at least as important as the divide between the parties overall. Anyone hoping to close the so-called "national security gap" between Democrats and Republicans needs to take into account that the clear difference in ideological and policy outlook between members of the two parties is in the area of national security. It is not entirely clear to me how we can close a gap on the issue that most starkly divides the two parties.
Lots, lot more in the study. Give it a look.