2012 Election | Indiana | News

GOP Voters Lean Toward Social 'Truce,' But Will It Last?

MitchDaniels Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels caused a bit of a stir among his Republican peers when he suggested last year that the GOP call a "truce" on social issues and instead focus on the economy.

"[The next president] would have to call a truce on the so-called social issues," said Daniels in an interview with The Weekly Standard. "We’re going to just have to agree to get along for a little while,” until the economy recovers.

Social conservatives balked at the time, but Daniels, a potential 2012 contender, may have been on the right track, because a poll put out by the Wall Street Journal and NBC shows that the majority of Republicans would rather their elected officials mind money, not people's sex lives.

65% of GOP primary voters said they would be more likely to vote for a Republican who focuses MORE on fiscal issues and LESS on social issues, while just 8% said they’d be less likely. And get this: Among evangelicals, the split was nearly identical, 65%-14%.

While this reads like good news, let's not forget that the economy dominated last year's midterm elections, yet the emboldened GOP has been launching anti-gay initiatives from coast-to-coast.

Still, when this poll's coupled with the number of people now supporting marriage equality, we see a general trend among Americans: they've got enough on their plate that they don't need to be worrying about archaic culture wars.

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  1. Nope. Won't last. Can't last.

    60-70% of Republican caucus-goers in Iowa are evangelicals. Stopping equality is damned near their number one concern. Republicans who want to win in Iowa will be competing to be the most anti-gay.

    It will be nasty.

    Posted by: K in VA | Mar 4, 2011 12:36:14 PM

  2. Don't expect Congress to listen to the opinions of voters. If they did, the financial industry would have to get a pass to take a break from their $50,000 per year jobs! Ditto equal marriage, health care, Social Security, etc.

    Posted by: Hue-Man | Mar 4, 2011 12:49:02 PM

  3. Republicans promised to focus on the economy if the got elected in 2010, but what have they tried to do since taking power? Repeal health care reform, defund Planned Parenthood, break the public employee unions. Now with Obama not defending DOMA, you know Republicans will spend a lot of time on that. All this works against the message they tried to sell in 2010. I'm feeling more and more optimistic about Obama's reelection in 2012.

    Posted by: Ken | Mar 4, 2011 12:55:15 PM

  4. Haha, I like that you added the 'until the economy recovers.' part at the end of his quote, because that's probably what he means.

    Posted by: Mike C. | Mar 4, 2011 1:02:57 PM

  5. Look at the state legislatures! After being told that the Tea Party is only about fiscal issues, all those new Tea partiers are putting forth anti-gay bills and putting anti-gay language into bills. No, that might be the top concern of voters, but since the fiscal issues are not going to be easy to solve (nor their agenda easy to pass) they can score points by passing a bill rolling back anti-discrimination laws in one city within the state (in spite of Roemer v Evans ruling such actions unconstitutional).

    Posted by: Houndentenor | Mar 4, 2011 1:10:30 PM

  6. That's right, it's just a "truce" -- not a surrender. Once it's in the GOP's interest to fire up its voters with anti-gay rhetoric, it will.

    Posted by: xtab | Mar 4, 2011 1:33:59 PM

  7. "shows that the majority of Republicans would rather their elected officials mind money, not people's sex lives"

    My fight for my equality, as a gay man, has nothing to do with my "sex life" as you put it. An extremely poor choice of words. That "what you do in your bedroom" stuff is what the bigots use.

    Posted by: Terry | Mar 4, 2011 1:34:18 PM

  8. Social truce to a republican means recriminalizing homosexuals but not castrating them.

    Posted by: candide | Mar 4, 2011 2:16:41 PM

  9. Terry: In a Republican viewpoint, our "sex lives" is all we are, and all they care about. If they knew us, or saw us as complete beings, we wouldn't have this problem.

    Posted by: Jeff Kurtti | Mar 4, 2011 2:22:09 PM

  10. Dear Mr. Mouse,

    Let's put all our differences behind us for awhile... won't you please come to supper? I even made you a special outfit to wear. It's made out of bread and cheese.


    Mr. Cat

    Posted by: bobbyjoe | Mar 4, 2011 2:39:12 PM

  11. Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit.

    People in a poll DO NOT equal voters. And, polling notwithstanding, what's happening in the state and federal legislatures is the EXACT OPPOSITE of the claim being made.

    Posted by: BobN | Mar 4, 2011 3:26:21 PM

  12. These people speak with forked tongue. They say one thing while their actions say something entirely different. Until their actions match their rhetoric, it's all just noise to me designed to distract us from what they're really up to. Don't be fooled.

    Posted by: mytwocents | Mar 4, 2011 4:02:07 PM

  13. They lie so easily. They declare a truce while openning new fronts in their war!

    Posted by: austin | Mar 4, 2011 4:26:18 PM

  14. Yep.. i doubt it s going to last..

    Posted by: Acheter Viagra Generique | Mar 4, 2011 4:39:28 PM

  15. Excellent idea, Gov. Daniels.

    Given that the GOP has little to offer other than morbid nostalgia for a past which never was, hysterical fear of a future they can't understand, and no relation to the present other than the rage-driven impulse to wreck it... By all means, focus on something else.

    You don't _have_ anything else.

    Posted by: Bryan | Mar 5, 2011 12:33:01 AM

  16. The whole purpose of this so called "truce" is to create a diversion. The LBGT community has been vigilant in their fight for fair, equal, civil, and human rights. For the most part, some measurable gains have been made. This has put some within the GOP to concern themselves as to whether or not they can continue to discriminate regarding LGBT issues, and win. Their calling a truce is to buy themselves more time to come up with more elaborate and creative ways to hate the gays. This truce is a complete and total farce. Now is not the time to retreat... it is the time to push forward towards the victory that we call equality. Peace & Love. JR

    Posted by: Javier | Mar 5, 2011 3:30:34 AM

  17. If this were true, Mitch would be leading his party in Indiana to stop focusing on shoving anti-gay marriage and anti civil union ammendments into the Indiana State constitution (where they already exist). Lest we forget, "My Man Mitch" was the Budget Director under George W that depleated our national budget surpluses of 5.6 Trillion dollars and began our current situation. In my oppinion, his words are just that, words.

    Posted by: John | Mar 5, 2011 7:59:33 AM

  18. Daniels will be made to pay for this remark, however timid. The GOP has been stuck in full-on Stalinist ideological purity mode for 16 years. If there's one thing Gingrich and Palin and Romney can agree on, it's to crush dissent like this with an iron fist.

    Posted by: Skye Winspur | Mar 5, 2011 11:14:03 AM

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