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RE: A New Republican Coalition?


The notion of Giuliani as the man to reshape the Republican coalition is interesting. Noemie Emery suggests something similar, in greater detail, in the current Weekly Standard. But in all the talk about Giuliani we have to remember one thing: most Republican voters do not yet realize that Giuliani is very liberal on social issues. Maybe when they realize it they will still like him. But what little evidence exists (this Gallup poll, for instance) suggests otherwise. Emery’s article, in particular, argues Republicans are making a conscious choice to prefer Giuliani’s strengths over social conservatism. There just doesn’t seem to be evidence to support that view right now.

The background of all three front-runners at the moment suggests the 2008 election will redefine the way most people think about the Republican coalition, though (as Jonah suggested in his column this week) that doesn’t necessarily mean the coalition itself will actually change. Of course it’s much too early to say, but given three candidates who are all basically good on the war, is the one who is by far the most socially liberal really likely to win, and to refashion Republican politics?