A Washingto Post article (reg. req.) reports that
George E. Marcus, a political scientist at Williams College, said the election was “a referendum on which anxiety is greater” — fears about terrorism or economic trouble. Marcus noted that more Democrats supported Bush than Republicans who voted for Kerry. “The cause of it, I think, is anxiety,” he said. “When people are anxious . . . that leads to the opportunity for defection.”
Plausible enough. I wonder of there is more cross-over voting during war time elections.
The article isn’t quite biased — although I wonder how it would have been written if Kerry had won — but the thesis seems to be that Bush’s victory is attributable to fear. The author claims that “In the end, the party that breaks down the divide between blue and red states may be the one that can calm the nation’s many fears.”
My “fears” will be calmed when the men who want to kill my daughters are either dead or otherwise occupied. The “divide” between, say, Massachusetts and Nebraska, is much lower down on my list of concerns. But maybe that’s just me.