Monday, June 11, 2007

Rural voters no longer leaning Republican?

NPR has a story up along with some corresponding commentary at Daily Kos.
Forty-one percent named the war in Iraq among their two top issues for the
president and Congress. Half agreed with the statement that "the current course
[in Iraq] cannot bring stability, and we need to start reducing the number of
troops." Half also agreed with congressional attempts to reduce troop levels in
Iraq. Less than half, 45 percent, affirmed the Bush administration's "stay the
course" strategy; and 42 percent want their members of Congress to oppose
"measures that could undermine the president's policies in Iraq."

Those numbers look promising!

However issues surrounding family values still dominate discourse amongst rural voters.
But 56 percent said that personal character and a commitment to core family
values are more important in a presidential candidate than a commitment to
changing Iraq war policy.

Family values will always be a consistent theme in most rural communities. You simply cannot evade the issue in Greater Minnesota. We must frame the discussion on family values in a different light.

As long as the right gets to frame family values along the lines of choice and same sex marriage, we will lose rural communities. We must frame the family values discussion to include access to health care, care for our seniors, and the war in Iraq, which has taken over 3,500 servicemen and women.

Hillary Clinton needs to do better in rural areas!
They were evenly split between warm and cool feelings for all the candidates,
Democratic and Republican. Democrat Hillary Clinton rated as unpopular as
illegal immigrants.

This is what concerns me about her candidacy. The GOP machine will have 9 months from the caucuses and primaries until the election to derail Hillary, should she receive the nomination.

With more and more Republicans moving away from the President, it will be tough to be the front runner for nearly 2 years.

In addition to framing the debate, we need to really show rural America that these elections have consequences. The actions post election carry even more consequences. As progressive Democrats, we need to do a better job of helping people see these consequences.

Lack of access to affordable and quality health care.

Rural schools that are underfunded, collapsing and creating co-ops with other communities. When these schools combine, communities begin to lose their strong community identity.

Our kids are fighting and dying in a quagmire in Iraq.

Rural economies are suffering in Greater Minnesota and all over the US. With rural voters trending blue, perhaps the issues that concern the majority of working and middle class Americans will hit the spotlight.

No comments: