The latest on the presidential horse race.

Fewer Voters Support Conservative Economic, Social Positions: New Poll

In an age of name recognition and party affiliation, issues have become almost irrelevant. We spend so much time looking at polls on which candidate voters prefer and almost no time focusing on what issues are most important to voters and where they stand.

A new Gallup poll, however, has found that conservatives who have won many an election campaigning against social issues like abortion and gay marriage are losing their edge which could be bad news for the Republicans’ 2016 hopes.

The poll, looking at how people identify with conservatives on economic and social issues, found that conservatives remain in the lead among voters but that lead has plummeted since 2010 when the Republicans won back Congress.

According to the poll, conservatives owned a 36 percent advantage over liberals on economic issues in 2010. Today, they own a 21 percent advantage over liberals on economic issues. That number has consistently fallen from 36 to 28 percent in 2011, 26 percent in 2012, and 22 percent last year.

On the social side of things is where conservatives are in the most trouble. In 2010 when the GOP ran one of its strongest mid-term elections in history, conservatives owned a 17 percent advantage over liberals on social issues. Today, that number has fallen to just 4 percent. Between 2001 and 2006, that number never fell below 10 percent.

As the poll points outs, “conservatism is still the dominant ideology in the US when Americans are asked to describe their political views… However, the conservative advantages are shrinking.”

(Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore)

“It is possible that in the next few years, there will be more Americans describing themselves as social liberal than as socially conservative. This movement is consistent with trends Gallup has seen on specific issues, perhaps most notable Americans’ views toward gay rights and legalizing marijuana,” the report states.