Sunday, April 15, 2012

Portrait Of The 40%

Bill Keller on the voters Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will need to win:

The middle is not the home of bland, split-the-difference politics, or a cult that worships bipartisan process for its own sake. Swing voters have views; they are just not views that all come from any one party’s menu. Researchers at Third Way, a Clintonian think tank, have assembled a pretty plausible composite profile of these up-for-grabs voters.

¶Swing voters tend to be fiscal conservatives, meaning they are profoundly worried about deficits and debt.

¶They are mostly economic moderates, meaning they are free-marketers but expect government to help provide the physical and intellectual infrastructure that creates opportunity.

¶They are aspirational — that is, they have nothing against the rich — but they don’t oppose tax increases.

¶They want the country well protected, but not throwing its weight around in the world.

¶They tend to be fairly progressive on social issues; they think, for example, that abortion should be discouraged but not prohibited.

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