Pollster John Zogby has done work for a wide variety of candidates as well as major news organizations. He starts daily tracking polling in Iowa for NBC News and Reuters on January 8.
Brad O'Leary is publisher of "The O'Leary Report" newsletter, author of high school textbooks on politics, and has written a book on President Kennedy's assassination.
At the Monitor breakfast January 6, they discussed a new survey Zogby conducted for the O'Leary Report on the cultural differences between "red" states (voted for George Bush) and "blue" states (supported Al Gore):
(Zogby) "What we discovered was a nation that is really two nations, split down the middle on a number of issues. A completely different way of looking at President Bush, completely different in terms of attitudes towards a number of key values in addition to issues. ..."
(Zogby) "Those in red states are almost 10 points more likely to be rural voters than those from the blue states. Forty-four percent of those in red states identify themselves as conservative or very conservative compared to 33 percent of those in blue states. Fifty-six percent of those in red states identify themselves as Protestant to 37 percent Protestant in blue states.....among those who attend church or a place of worship at least weekly...52 percent [live in] red states...34 percent in blue states."
(Zogby) "I have to tell you the religion thing really just sort of blew me away. Frequent church-goers are dramatically more likely to live in red states and they vote. When you see the numbers of Protestants in these red states, you are always looking at at least half of those being born agains - that is substantial."
(Zogby) "We are looking at probably the most partisan election we have had in years. I think the broad appeal by the candidates is going to be get out their core....I don't think in this campaign you are going to see either side identifying its interests in terms of a nation-wide campaign. I think you are going to see a red versus blue strategy. And the broader implications: that's kind of sad."
(Zogby) "Democrats have to do something about family values. That is a huge deficit that they have against Republicans...while someone like (former Vermont Governor Howard) Dean I don't think can be terribly competitive in most of if not all of the red states, he certainly has to neutralize an issue that could be used against him in some of the pivotal blue states. ...This is more neutralizing a negative than accentuating a positive."
(O'Leary) "You would read this and say the Democrats could win but they would have to change their philosophy and their platform to accept back people they have pushed out.
(Zogby) "Democrats have become true to their history again and have gone back to the grand tradition of fratricide."