The Real Conservative Majority

I have been writing for over a decade about the most consistent datum in the last twenty consecutive Battleground Polls: the overwhelming conservative majority in America.  The Battleground Poll just published confirmed that persistent statistic.  When asked to define their own ideological position, 57% called themselves "very conservative" or "somewhat conservative," while 37% called themselves "very liberal" or "somewhat liberal."  The tiny smidgen of Americans who were either "unsure" or "moderate" or "refused to answer" was 5%. 

The twenty Battleground Polls over the last decade have all provided very close to identical responses to Question D3, while Americans are all over the place in responding to other questions.  But for those who want hope, it is not just the Battleground Poll which has been providing evidence of a vast conservative majority in America. 

An Associated Press-Ipsos Poll in early 2007 asked respondents to identify themselves ideologically.  Conservatives were, by far, the largest group with 41% of respondents calling themselves "conservative," while only 21% of respondents called themselves "liberal" and 34% called themselves "moderates."  Look at Survey USA polls, which show conservatives outnumber liberals in states like Oregon, Minnesota, and Washington

What should be more amazing is that even polling organizations which try to make conservatives appear as small as possible fail when the ideological preference question is asked directly.  The Los Angeles Times last month published a poll of Californians attitudes toward Jerry Brown's proposals for tackling the state's budget crisis.  The questions were profoundly misleading in many areas.  Note, particularly, the insidious manipulation of Question 38 and Question 39: Question 38 simply asks Californians whether they support Brown's budget plan, then Question 39 asks Californians exactly the same question but only after an informational prologue, which could have been written by Brown's own staff, which "explains" all of the "tough" cuts the governor proposes to make. 

Then, after this slanted preface (italics added): "After hearing this information do you favor or oppose this budget plan proposed by Jerry Brown?"  Voilà!  Californians' support for Brown's budget rises dramatically.  Indeed, the way this blatantly pro-Brown educational preface to Question 39 reads, it is impossible to tell whether Californians are supporting Brown's proposals or having a state ballot question to vote on his proposals.  Consider also that the Republican budget alternatives are never given this favored treatment or, indeed, explained at all. 

This is a poll which was not going to give conservatives any break at all.  In fact, the poll in the Q 38 to Q 39 progression was designed to produce a false positive, support for Brown that was the product of legerdemain and not serious polling.  Still, this poll shows the same encouragement for conservatives that the Battleground Poll shows.  Drift down to Question 74 on page 14 and discover that this according to this cynically leftist poll in a state routinely considered a Democrat stronghold, more people identify themselves as "conservative" (36%) than "moderate" (35%) or "liberal" (24 %).

The L.A. Times poll fits into the pattern of virtually every major poll that asks this question.  Gallup, for example, has asked the question of ideological identification several times, and the response is always the same: conservatives outnumber liberals by a wide margin.  But that is not all.  In the Gallup Poll published this February, which broke down ideological identification by state, conservatives outnumbered liberals in every single state in the land.  There were more "conservatives" than "liberals" in Rhode Island, in Vermont, in Hawaii, in Massachusetts.  That shocking fact -- that conservatives outnumber liberals, according to Gallup, in every state of the union -- has been true in each poll published by Gallup which covers that question, except in 2010 in Rhode Island liberals had a three point edge over conservatives.  Earlier in 2010, the data showed conservatives outnumbering liberals in every state, with the difference in Vermont being slight.

No one in Rhode Island or Vermont calls himself "conservative" to try to please polling staff.  Few people in California would knowingly connect themselves to an ideology that has been smeared with every form of bigotry conceivable.  In public classrooms, in colleges, in film, in television programming, in book publishing and book reviews, in every chic and powerful center of American life, the word "conservative" is hissed like a Transylvanian curse.  In some parts of America, simply being a sincere and honest conservative may be tantamount to committing a hate crime (or, in the Orwellian world of modern leftism, a "hate thought-crime").

The real question should not be: are we really the silent -- silenced -- majority, but how many Americans actually believe in the profound and perverse silliness of the left?  Are not nearly all leftists, in fact, motivated by lust for power, greed for the public treasury, or the arrogance of manufactured merit?  When the Soviet Union fell, it was "discovered" that no one believed in Marxism any longer.  When the left falls in America, won't we find out just the same thing?

Bruce Walker is the author of Poor Lenin's Almanac: Perverse Leftists Proverbs for Modern Life.