Polling the GOP

Commentary by David Rosman

Columbia, MO – “Rush and Sarah” (Ink and Voice, February 9, 2010) was provocative enough that many of you responded. I love feedback. You were angry, you laughed and you provided fact checks; it was not Sarah who claimed to be able to see Russia from her front porch, It was Tina Fey doing her best Sarah impersonation. You also provided new and interesting information. I knew my readership was waaaaay above average.

Your responses generated a second article. Newsertainment” in the Columbia Missourian resulted from a conversation concerning my supposedly disrespect for Sarah Palin in “Rush and Sarah.” You think?

One reader sent me to an MSNBC report concerning the political demographics of the GOP conducted by Research 2000 for The Daily Kos.  The numbers from the complete survey in the Daily Kos were more interesting.

I question the validity of polls, especially if the sponsor of the survey is the opposition party. The Daily Kos is a “liberal” Internet news site. The target group was Republicans. The survey must be questioned. I did, including speaking with Del Ali, president of Research 2000.

So, here’s the scoop, Jackson. Ali said the survey indentified 2003 self-proclaimed Republicans from over 5,000 persons contacted. This is larg sampling.  Individuals who identified themselves with the Tea Party, as a conservative or anything other political affiliation were not included in the survey.

Looking at the survey as an academic, it appeareds that the questions were fair and the choices did not lead the responder. With a margin of error of +/- 2 percent, 95 percent of self-identified Republicans should be represented.

As for demographics, 89 percent of the respondents identified themselves as “white.” 44 percent as female. 75 percent of all respondents were over 45 years of age. The highest concentrations were from our southern states. Ethnicity, gender or age seemed to make little difference.

Here is my analysis and what MSNBC did not report.

•  91 percent will vote in the 2010 elections. Expect a strong Republican turnout in November if the numbers hold true. This may also indicate that a percentage answered positively due to perceived peer pressure

•  More than two-thirds of the respondents are not pro-union. This does not mean they are anti-union, though that is a consideration. This means those surveyed do not want to make it easier for unions to organize.

•  Congress has considered from time to time enacting laws allowing illegal immigrants who have resided in the U.S. to become citizens with the payment of a fine and learning English. If one includes the undecided, two-thirds of the GOP oppose such legislation.

•  Opinions of gays in the military, gay marriage, gays receiving government benefits and gays teaching in public schools received an overwhelmingly negative response.

•  Gender equality, however, shows a liberal quality, with about 90 percent of the respondents believing  a woman has the right to work and has equal say in household affairs.

•  A majority agree with the use of contraceptives and birth control pills as well as teaching sex education in public schools. However, an overwhelming 77 percent want Creationism taught.

•  Asking about salvation and belief in Jesus Christ, 70 percent of whites responded that Christianity is the only way to be accepted into heaven. Are the other 30 percent out of luck?

• 91 percent support the death penalty. This is a conservative apparent absolutist interpretation of “eye for an eye” retribution found in Leviticus 24:19–21, Exodus 21:22–25,  Deuteronomy 19:21 and Numbers 35:9–30. However, none of the four speaks to the taking of a life for a life.

Ali was not asked to conduct the same survey of Democrats and I was unable to find one. However, I am sure one would show a similar bias. The liberal crowd is just not as noisy – they are, shall I dare say, more conservative.

Is the poll fair and accurate? From my antidotal experience and speaking with my friends from the “other side,” I think so. Will those described be upset? Most likely and calling the Daily Kos as proof positive.

Regardless of the accuracy of the survey, this represents only a snapshot of the GOP and not the moderates or “Red Dog” Republicans. (I just made that up.) The survey does seem to indicate that the GOP is not the all-inclusive party as they profess, especially if one is an ethnic minority, atheist, gay, Darwinist, pro-choice, middle of the road conservative.

So, what are your thoughts?

(c) 2010 InkandVoice.com Columbia, MO

About David Rosman

David Rosman is an award winning editor, writer, professional speaker and college instructor in Communications, Ethics, Business and Politics. You can read more of David’s commentaries at ColumbiaMissourian.com, InkandVoice.com and NYJournalofBooks.com.
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4 Responses to Polling the GOP

  1. Jesus Christ says:

    We proclaim the risen Christ offer of salvation by inviting our middle school, high school, and college friends to confess Jesus as Lord and Savior. Jesus Christ

    [I have added this comment, though I am not sure what the author’s thoughts are about the column. This is not a place for evangelical proselytizing. My initial thought was to delete this; however, my sense of fairness and belief in the First Amendment changed my mind. I am willing to sign my own name, not take one that does not belong to me.Very unChristian if you ask me. David Rosman]

  2. Jennifer says:

    The results were consistent with other surveys of Republicans – so – it is probably pretty accurate..

  3. Maura says:

    I don’t believe that it’s a case of the “GOP … not [being] the all-inclusive party as they profess.”In fact, the people to the center/left of the political spectrum do not welcome open debate on the pro-life, right-to-work, pro-entrepreneurial poles of the GOP tent. You disagree with progressives, and there’s no room for you on their side. Republicans don’t think “gee, has a bi-sexual, Darwinian, union worker quota to fill.” Remember, it’s Chris Matthews, big-time lefty, who had to try to “forget” that President Obama “was black for a half-hour.” GOP-ers aren’t concerned with the outward stuff: for us, it’s substance over form.

  4. Hugh Macken says:

    Thanks for sharing this article Dave and for your thoughtfulness.

    If the survey results are accurate, for the life of me (no pun intended) I cannot understand how Christians can so overwhelmingly support the death penalty. I’m a Catholic Christian and that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to me. None. Period. Exclamation point! Perhaps the reason is that many non-Catholic Christians are taught to interpret the Bible on their own (which really isn’t Biblical in itself, by the way)

    Here’s what the Catholic Church teaches in its official catechism (the views of Antonin Scalia and other Catholic figures notwithstanding) and I basically agree:

    “If…non-lethal means are sufficient to defend and protect people’s safety from the aggressor, authority will limit itself to such means, as these are more in keeping with the concrete conditions of the common good and are more in conformity to the dignity of the human person.”

    As Catholics we claim and strive to believe and practice (practice being the operative word since only God is perfect) believing in the dignity of every single human person. We also believe that evil can do much to cover it up so that we are deceived into thinking that it has disappeared when it has not.

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