More evidence that the right-leaning America that “voted” for Bush in 2000 and 2004 really doesn’t exist. The corporate media has pushed this idea constantly, helping Bush (the corporate president) hide his two stolen elections.
Conventional wisdom says that the American public is fundamentally conservative – hostile to government, in favor of unregulated markets, at peace with inequality, wanting a foreign policy based on the projection of military power, and traditional in its social values.
But as this report demonstrates, that picture is fundamentally false. Media perceptions and past Republican electoral successes notwithstanding, Americans are progressive across a wide range of controversial issues, and they’re growing more progressive all the time.
This report gathers together years of public opinion data from unimpeachably nonpartisan sources to show that on issue after issue, the majority of Americans hold progressive positions. And this is true not only of specific policy proposals, but of the fundamental perspectives and approaches that Americans bring to bear on issues.
Nor is the progressive majority merely a product of the current political moment. On a broad array of issues, particularly social issues, American opinion has grown more and more progressive over the past few decades. In contrast, it is difficult to find an issue on which the public has grown steadily more conservative over the last 10, 20, or 30 years.
The issues covered in this report include the following:
- The role of government – Americans support an active government that tackles problems, provides services, and aids those in need.
- The economy – Americans support increasing the minimum wage and strong unions, and believe the wealthy and corporations don’t pay their fair share of taxes.
- Social issues – Americans support legal abortion and embryonic stem cell research; opinions on equal rights for women and gay Americans have grown dramatically more progressive in recent years.
- Security – Americans support a progressive approach to national security, emphasizing strong alliances and diplomacy over the indiscriminate use of military force. On domestic security issues, progressive approaches to crime and gun control enjoy wide support.
- The environment – By enormous margins, Americans favor strong environmental protections, a core progressive belief.
- Energy – Americans support energy conservation and the development of alternative fuels.
- Health care – Americans clearly favor universal coverage and are more than comfortable with government solutions to the health care problem.
In short, a look across the scope of American public opinion reveals a public that holds progressive positions and supports progressive solutions on economic issues, on social issues, on security issues – indeed, on nearly all the key issues confronting the country. For years, the conventional wisdom has maintained just the opposite, but the facts are impossible to ignore.