The Left is ecstatic about the latest ABC News-Washington Post poll, which claimed a surge in public support for the so-called "public option," wrapped in the (insincere) rhetoric of "choice" and "competition." The poll asks if the government should "create a new health insurance plan to compete with private insurance plans," and 57 percent agree. Happy days are here again for liberals.
Liberals in the media found even better news to declare: a new low for the Republican Party, since only 20 percent of those surveyed "usually" think of themselves as Republicans. (Another 19 percent "lean more" toward the Republicans, but that number is being ignored because 20 percent sounds better.) MSNBC's David Shuster openly hoped: "Have centrists been frightened away from the Republican Party by the right-wing birthers, Tenthers, and town hall screamers?"
PBS "NewsHour" anchor Judy Woodruff proclaimed this was the worst showing for the GOP in a quarter-century, and the remedy was sounding much more like the Democrats. Why be the Party of No when you can be the Party of Snowe? Liberal Mark Shields knew whom the GOP should follow: "(Lindsey Graham and John McCain) are trying to reach out, and they recognize the country's changed. The party has to change. And the Republican Party got whomped, thumped, among those new emerging constituencies, among young voters."
If Shields truly understood the Republican Party, he'd understand it is precisely because of this thinking that Lindsey Graham is not currently secretary of state in the John McCain administration.
Liberals who fondly reminisce about recreating that supine moderate Republican establishment of the '70s might have looked deeper into the poll. So bedazzled was the Left by that 57 percent number that they overlooked -- or just plain ignored -- the other numbers in that ABC-Washington Post survey.
When asked if their views were liberal, moderate, or conservative, 38 percent said conservative, and only 23 percent said liberal. In January, those numbers were 32 percent and 24 percent, respectively. That's a net gain of seven points for conservatives since Obama took office. That's a national headline. Unless you're a leftist media outlet, in which case you ignored it.