CHICAGO — The Democratic Party is growing more liberal for the first time in a generation.
It's more antiwar than at any time since 1972. Support is growing for such traditionally liberal values as using the federal government to help the poor. And 40 percent of Democrats now call themselves liberal, the highest in more than three decades and twice the low-water mark recorded as the conservative Reagan revolution swept the country in the early 1980s....
The Democrats' shift to the left carries some risk, but probably much less than it would have in years past. That's because independent voters — the ones who swing back and forth and thus decide elections — also have turned against the war and in favor of many more liberal approaches to government.
"There is greater support for the social safety net, more concern for inequality of income," said Andy Kohut, the president of the nonpartisan Pew Research Center. "More people are falling into the liberal category based on their values."
The most noteworthy shift is opposition to the war in Iraq....
Sunday, August 5, 2007
McClatchy Washington Bureau | :