David Brooks has an interesting op-ed piece in The New York Times on the division of the Democrats and the unity of the GOP going in to 2004. He believes that there will be a substantial number of Democrats who will defect over to the Bush side due to the War on Terror.
Indeed, there’s considerable evidence of this coming into play. Former NYC mayor Ed Koch has endorsed George W. Bush. Sen. Zell Miller is speaking out about why he feels the Democratic Party is no longer a national party. Other liberal hawks are looking at the current Democratic field with disgust. The anti-war sentiment among the Democrats could very well be the kiss of death for them in 2004.
The era of the 47/47 split in US politics may be drawing to a close. The events of September 11 put the Republican’s bread-and-butter issue of national defense on the forefront of American political consciousness while fragmenting the Democrats. The Democrats’ insistance that the liberation of Iraq should never have happened is an issue that instantly alienates them from over half of the electorate. In essence, they’re arguing that mass murder is OK so long as the UN allows it by doing nothing. Such an argument isn’t liberal, it’s an apologia for fascism.
The Democrats don’t want to admit it or deal with it, but there is a shift occurring in American politics as the 9/11 Democrats break away from their party. The last time this shift occurred was the race in 1980 where the Reagan Democrats gave the White House to the GOP for 12 years. If I were the Democrats I would be very worried that this realignment will have similar results.