Photo: Nate Silver, New York Times
Nate Silver at the New York Times presents a chart showing why Republicans have become so allergic to compromise in the debt ceiling negotiations. As a party, he explains, the GOP is increasingly reliant on a single constituency: conservatives.”The terms ‘Republican’ and ‘conservative’ are growing closer and closer to being synonyms,” Silver writes. “Fewer and fewer nonconservatives vote Republican, and fewer and fewer Republican voters are not conservative.”
Silver notes that while liberals also make up a growing segment of the Democratic electorate, moderates still maintain a plurality within the party.
The practical effects of this difference can be seen in recent weeks, as President Barack Obama has appeared more open to sacrificing sacred liberal cows in the budget negotiations than his Republican opponents have been to giving up some of their own demands, particularly on taxes.
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