Auditing the Republican and Democratic Brands

As brands, the Democratic and Republican parties have more ideological homogeneity than they once did. But they still have less than you might suppose, as is clear in the findings of a new Diageo/The Hotline poll.

Though Democrats skew to the liberal end of the spectrum, as you’d expect, one in five classify themselves as “moderate, leans conservative” (3 percent), “somewhat conservative” (11 percent) or “very conservative” (6 percent). And while Republicans skew mainly to the conservative end of the spectrum, about one in 10 are either “moderate, leans liberal” (3 percent) or “somewhat liberal” (8 percent). Then again, fewer than 1 percent of Republicans described themselves as “very liberal.”

The poll rebuts the common notion that independents are mostly situated between Democrats and Republicans on the ideological scale. Twenty-two percent did rate themselves as “moderate,” the but nearly four in 10 put themselves to the right of that position — 3 percent “moderate, leans conservative,” 27 percent “somewhat conservative” and 8 percent “very conservative.” Markedly fewer skewed left — 3 percent “moderate, leans liberal,” 13 percent “somewhat liberal” and 4 percent “very liberal.”