Friday, July 22, 2011

Nate Silverberg shows that Republican Governors from 2010 have abandoned the voters of their states

Nate Silverberg reports statistics that indicate that as of 2010 the Republican governors generally have become stopped appealing to swing voters in their states and have moved ideologically hard right. He also states "that the voters are starting to notice."

Here are two of Silverberg's key graphics:

In this one the blue dots show the Democratic governors ploted by their ideology against the ideology of their state. This shows that Democratic governors range from quite liberal to moderate and that the individual governors tend to match the voters of the state they are in.

The red dots - Republican governors - however show a completely different pattern. As of the 2010 election they have all become hard right ideologues. More important is the fact that they are a great deal more right wing than the states they are governors in.

The logical next step is to compare the polled popularity of each governor. Here is Silverberg's chart on that.

The unsurprising result is that Republicans now have a group of extremely unpopular governors — particularly Mr. Scott of Florida, Scott Walker of Wisconsin, John R. Kasich of Ohio and Paul R. LePage of Maine, all of whom have disapproval ratings exceeding 50 percent. Other Republican governors in crucial swing states like Michigan and Pennsylvania also have below-average ratings.

Republicans do have a couple of bright spots — especially Susana Martinez of New Mexico and Bob McDonnell of Virginia — who remain quite popular and should have a long political future. But other Republican governors who are linked to national politics, like Rick Perry of Texas and Chris Christie of New Jersey, are not especially popular in their home states.

Silverberg does not suggest that this is in anyway predictive of the likelihood that Obama will be reelected in 2012. But it certainly shows that the Republicans can expect trouble in a great many states they now have governors in.

Personal opinion.

It is my own opinion that when right-wing ideologue politicians find strong resistance to their ideology in the voters they have to go to for reelection that their reaction is to try to limit the ability of their opposition to be able to vote. They also will try to pass a number of punitive laws that enact their ideology and that enforce the new laws with police powers. In other words, thwarted right-wing ideologue politicians find themselves forced to abandon democracy and begin using authoritarian government. These are the techniques used in the South after Reconstruction in order to subordinate the newly freed African American citizens for a century.

Currently this explains the many efforts to pack the federal court system with ideologues from the Federalist Society, to pass and rapidly enforce anti-abortion laws the voters do not approve of, and to restrict the voting rights of minority and other likely Democratic Party voters.

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