The Post-ABC News poll released this week found the president with a 33 percent approval rating and suffering losses in esteem almost everywhere. Conservatives are by no means his biggest problem.
In January 2005 Republicans who described themselves as conservative gave Bush an astonishing 94 percent approval rating. The new Post-ABC survey, conducted May 11 to May 15, put Bush's approval rating among conservative Republicans at 76 percent, down 18 points.
But the poll found that among moderate Republicans, the president's approval rating had declined 31 points, from 88 percent in January 2005 to 57 percent now. Recent surveys by Gallup and the Pew Research Center also point to losses among moderates.
While it’s all nice and dandy that the rightwing base wants to be heard, much like the leftwing base wants to be heard by Democrats, the Republican Party needs to appeal to the moderate voters, who, most likely will not be jumping for joy about Republican nutter-pandering attempts, like the Federal Marriage Amendment or state bans on abortion (cough, loonyfuckinSouthDakota, cough). Many moderates are really rather indifferent to such things as gay-marriage and abortion. They have an opinion, but it isn’t anything that really motivates them to the levels of activism that we on the left and those on the right exhibit. Most moderates are big issue voters, swayed by things like Iraq, the economy, and immigration, and really wants to see performance on those key issues; something that the Republican midterm plan can’t even focus on.
The whole moderate population is looking for someone to lead on their issues, which is something that Democrats need to realize and embrace. Providing convincing leadership to the moderates will always win you elections… much more than “rallying either base”.