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An Enduring Advantage


Third, Klein thinks that in stressing the importance of such issues as abortion, I am overgeneralizing from the 2000 and 2004 elections. I don’t think so. I think these issues have been gaining Republicans votes for a generation. The 2006 results, in which Democrats cleaned up on such issues as free trade, the minimum wage, and prescription drugs, and ran pro-life candidates in crucial districts, suggest that it is still the case that, in general, the social issues help Republicans and the economic ones hurt them. The 2000 and 2004 results did not come from nowhere: They represented the continuation of trends that had been building for years. Let’s keep in mind that we had some major events in this country between 2000 and 2004—attacks, wars, scandals—and the electoral map looked pretty much the same. It’s possible that Giuliani could change the game more than Sept. 11 itself did. I’m just saying: It’s quite a gamble.


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