Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Libertarians Defecting to Democrats

I’ve wondered for quite a while how libertarians, as well as true limited government conservatives, could consider staying in the Republican Party. Republicans use a lot of libertarian and free market rhetoric, but at the end of the day typically choose authoritarian, big government policies. Bill Clinton anounced (partially in response to dealing with a GOP Congress) that the era of big government is over. George Bush brought it back, and it is big government of the worst type.

RealClearPolitics provides discusses evidence froma Pew study that fewer and fewer libertarians feel at home in the GOP. While traditionally libertarians who identified with a major party have been Republicans, the Pew study found that 50 percent of libertarians identified as Republicans and 41 percent as Democrats. With the degree of polarization seen in the last two elections, attracting a group such as libertarians could tip the balance if the next Presidential race is so close. This may be possible if Democrats continue to show concern for issues such as defending civil liberties, avoiding unnecessary wars, and reversing the power grab we have recently seen from the Executive Branch. Fortunately attracting this group can be done with the same issues which are attractive to the Starbucks Republicans who are also defecting to the Democrats.


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