Withdrawal should be Democrats Anti-Gay Marriage

Democracy Corps reguarly conducts a "warm" and "cool" rating for a variety of groups, individuals, policies and events. Without fail, gay marriage always receives the the "coldest" rating of anything they poll on. However, it is starting to face some real competition from the Iraq war. Here are the long term trends:
0 = coldest
100 = warmest
       Gay Marriage    The Iraq War    Gap
2005
Oct	   30.5 	   37.7        7.2
Sep	   32.7 	   35.8        3.1
Jul	   33.9 	   39.5        5.6
Jun	   32.0 	   39.6        7.6
May	   32.1 	   39.5        7.4
Apr	   30.2 	   39.5        9.3
Mar	   34.1 	   44.3        10.2
Feb	   29.3 	   42.5        13.2
2004
Nov	   31.5 	   42.9        11.4
Oct	   32.4 	   43.3        10.9
Sep	   32.0 	   43.8        11.8 
Aug	   31.6 	   42.9        11.3
Jul	   31.4 	   41.6        10.2
Jun	   32.7 	   42.9        10.2
May	   31.6 	   43.1        11.5
Apr	   29.1 	   44.9        15.8
Mar	   29.6 	   47.7        18.1
Feb	   -NA- 	   47.2        -NA-
Jan	   -NA- 	   47.5        -NA-
While October saw the gap between the two rise somewhat, the long-term trend is undeniable: the Iraq war is gradually becoming as unpopular as gay marriage. From March of 2004 to September of 2005, the gap between the two dropped by 15 points, almost to the point where it no longer existed. In March of 2004, the Iraq war was more popular than Dick Cheney, free trade agreements, and big corporations. Now, its only rival for unpopularity is gay marriage (and the Republican gay marriage of 2006 and/or 2008, immigration, which stands at 39.8).

Here is what perhaps amazes me the most about these numbers. In 2004, most Democrats were too gutless / homophobic to stand up for equal marriage rights for gay Americans. I am certain the the unpopularity of gay marriage nationwide played a role in this. Now, in 2005, most high-prfile Democrats are still too gutless to stand up against something that will soon be just as unpopular: the Iraq war. Thus, it would seem that the Democratic leadership has finally grown a spine, but it has done so by taking up a position opposed not only by the majority of the country, but also by the vast majority of its members. In other words, the Democratic leadership has finally decided to take an unpopular stand, and that stand pits them against them own members and on the same side as the Repbulican leadership. Way to choose your moments.

One year from now, the Iraq war will probably be less popular than gay marriage, and the Republican Noise Machine will probably be whipping the country into an anti-immigration fervor in the same way they tried to whip up a homophobic fervor in 2004. Withdrawal could serve as an all-purpose, all-important counter to anything Republicans throw up during the midterms, including immigration, if the leadership just has the courage to come out in favor of it. And it really is a no-brainer policy wise as well. Can anyone seriously beleive that if we haven't achieved whatever our mission is in Iraq in another year, that further prolonging the occupation will help achieve it? If the first four years of war didn't accomplish anything, the next several won't accomplish anything either.

Tags: Ideology (all tags)

Comments

8 Comments

Nice numbers
Maybe this data will get through to Democratic leadership in a way that the obvious stink of an illegal and failing war so far has not.

It's a good comparison too because being publicly anti-gay marriage is still embarrasing in a way that being against the war apparently is for so many prominent elected Democrats.

Can they accept that, yes, they are exposing themselves to oppose to war, but however patriotic they think the public is, so many are starting to hate this war in their hearts.

Public tolerance and public patriotism are both deceptive.

by thief 2005-10-17 02:18PM | 0 recs
gee i wonder why no one
is blogging about the war if that's the case

....mumbles something....

by goplies 2005-10-17 02:54PM | 0 recs
Why are Democrats so gutless?
This question is rhetorical of course, but I believe it's because there is no accountability.  Conservatives are perfectly willing to sacrifice Republicans by not voting and having their black-sheep candidate lose to a Dem in order to set an example.

The reason why we have people like Hillary, Biden, Lieberman, etc is because we keep voting for them out of fear that the Republicans will be worse.

As painfull as it may be, we must be willing to stay home and throw our support behind "fighting Dems", like Paul Hackett.  

Once Dems start losing because they dont respect their constituents, then we will start seeing a turnaround.

My .02.

by dayspring 2005-10-17 02:56PM | 0 recs
I disagree.
Don't get me wrong.  I was not and am not for the Iraq quagmire.  However, it's like the "Nixon to China" thing.  At this particular point in time, until the Democrats gain more credibility on national security issues, it'll have to be a Republican to lead on a pullout.  

Democrats don't have the security reputation (yet) to take the lead on this, even though a majority of people are for a withdrawal.

IMO, Democrats need to build more of a reputation on security issues to be taken seriously on something like this.  The good news is that the Democrats HAVE been doing a good job on security lately.  But, they have some ways to go, as 2004 proved.

Watch what Hillary does.  Whatever she decides, dollars to donuts, she'll have the right idea.

by jgarcia 2005-10-17 06:09PM | 0 recs
Face it -- post 9/11...
...'more of a reputation on security issues' actually means 'promptitude in killing brown people who worship the wrong God'.

In a time when politics is a poker game, played with the bodies of dead Asian civilians as chips, we will never 'win', because the GOP is both a player and the banker.

Biden and Clinton (H.) and the other 'national-security Democrats' nevertheless can't wait for an empty chair in that game.

I'm not even sure whether we should be sitting down at the table...

by Davis X Machina 2005-10-17 06:22PM | 0 recs
Anybody read the Democracy Corps
article.  I think it mentioned the word Iraq maybe one or two times.  The entire focus of the article is on domestic issues.  If that doesn't explain a lot, I don't know what does.  
by Eric11 2005-10-17 07:48PM | 0 recs
Nailed
Davis X, terrific post. On target and well-worded.
by daryl 2005-10-18 09:26AM | 0 recs
withdrawal + no gay marriage = victory
There are tons of voters who will jump ship to the democrats as long as the democrats aren't flagrantly slapping them in the face on culture issues. The pendulum has reversed course.
by Paul Goodman 2005-10-19 08:31AM | 0 recs

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