According to Gallup, the Democratic advantage in “leaned party identification” has been cut in half since Obama’s inauguation:
Since Barack Obama took office as president in January, the Democratic advantage in leaned party identification has shrunk each quarter, from 13 points in the first quarter (52% to 39%) to 9 points in the second quarter (49% to 40%) and 6 points in the most recent quarter (48% to 42%).
This “six-point spread in leaned party affiliation is the smallest Gallup has measured since 2005.” During George W. Bush’s second term, “an increasing number of Americans began to align themselves with the Democratic Party.”
Once the Democrats came to power, they could no longer hide their ideology behind their primary mantra (which they’re still chanting in many quarters, particularly New Jersey) of “Bush is bad; we’re not Bush. Bush is bad; we’re not Bush. Bush is bad; we’re not Bush. George W. Bush is bad, bad, bad. He’s very bad. So, vote for us ’cause we’re not Bush.”
Now, that people see the kinds of solutions Democrats are offering, they’re turning away from the party. More of them might find a home in the GOP if the Republican Party were to do a more convincing job of articulating its small government principles, at a time when, Gallup has found, the American people are becoming increasingly skeptical of big government.