I think it goes without saying that this is very good news indeed:
Republicans have not made up ground they lost among rural voters in the 2006 election, according to a poll commissioned by the Center for Rural Strategies. The study indicates that negative views about the Bush administration, the war in Iraq, and the economy are eroding the Republican party’s rural base.
But rural voters remain more conservative than the nation as a whole, creating an opportunity for Republicans to make up their losses, according to the poll of 804 rural likely voters conducted this month.
Among the findings of the Rural Strategies poll are:
- Rural voters deliver a narrow plurality to a generic Democratic candidate for President: 46 – 43 percent. In contrast, President Bush won the rural vote in 2004 by 19 points.
- Voters are not inspired by any candidate for president, including Fred Thompson, who draws a modest 22 percent favorable, 18 percent unfavorable score among the 52 percent who are familiar with him.
- At the Congressional level, voters prefer Democrats in named trial heats 46 – 44 percent.
The GOP needs to destroy the Democrats in rural areas to have a hope of winning in 2008. Not beat. Destroy. As noted, Bush won in 2004 by 19% in rural areas — and barely won. Had Bush won the rural areas by only 12%, it’s likely President Kerry would be gearing up for next year. Had Bush lost the rural vote by 3%, Bush would’ve lost in an epic landslide.