In 2015, Gallup reveals that the majority of Americans are conservative, and have been since 2009. In its annual “State of the States” series Gallup identified state-by-state differences across political, economic and wellbeing measures. Gallup reports that in 2015, Americans identified ideologically from most to least as Conservative (37%), Moderate (35%), and Liberal (24%).
Conservatives have outnumbered moderates as well as liberals in the U.S. population each year since 2009, coinciding with Barack Obama’s presidency. Before that, spanning George W. Bush’s presidency, from 2001 to 2008, the two groups were about tied. Through most of Bill Clinton’s presidency, from 1993 to 2000, moderates had a slight edge.”
Based on annual averages of Gallup telephone calls, Conservatives hover between 36 and 37 percent, Liberals grew from 17 to 24 percent, and Moderates decreased from 43 to 36 percent.
When it comes to the political party affiliation of individual states, Gallup found that in 2015, 20 states are “solidly Republican or leaning Republican,” compared with 14 “solidly Democratic or leaning Democratic.” The remaining 16 are competitive.
This marks a dramatic shift; Gallup reports: “Red States outnumber Blue States in first time since Gallup tracking.”
Notably, 2015 was the first time in eight years that more states have respondents who identify as Republican than Democrat.
The three most Republican states are Wyoming, Idaho, and Utah. The three most Democratic states are Vermont, Hawaii, and Rhode Island.
The data since 2009 evidences that the majority of Americans are conservative, which partially explains the pandering to conservative voters by Republican presidential nominees claiming their commitment to conservative values. In light of self-identifying information provided by Americans, one wonders why the “GOP Establishment” consistently nominates non-conservative candidates to office.
Wouldn’t it make sense to elect a representative who reflects the majority of American’s views? In 1980 Reagan won 44 states; in 1984 he won 49. If Republicans were to elect a conservative wouldn’t it be more likely that a similar outcome would occur? The state-by-state Gallup Poll ideological breakdown suggests it would.
This article was first published on February 8, 2016.