05/21/2009 09:31 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Omero: Obama & Dems Close National Security Gap

Bad news continues for Republicans.  Not only is the national party identification gap widening, as I posted a few weeks ago, support for progressive views on social issues is increasing.  Now a recent Democracy Corps survey piles on.  For the first time in Democracy Corps' research, voters are now evenly divided on which party is doing the better job on national security (41% Democrats, 43% Republicans).  In 2003, for example, more than twice as many voters felt Republicans did a better job (54%) than said Democrats were doing the better job (25%). 


Further, Democrats were at or better than parity on many other foreign policy issues, such as "improving global respect for America" (+36 Dem advantage), "foreign policy" (+17), "the situation in Iraq" (+10), "immigration" (+2), and "the war on terrorism" (+0). 


Obama's own job approval ratings on national security are even stronger.  Nearly two-thirds (64%) approve of the job Obama is doing on national security (31% disapprove).  These numbers are actually stronger than Obama's overall approval rating (58% approve, 33% disapprove).


Further, despite former Vice-President Cheney's claims, a majority (55%) feels Obama's policies have increased our national security (37% undermine). By contrast, a majority (51%) feels President Bush's policies undermined our national security (44% increased). 


What these data (along with other recent polling) show is how pervasive are recent Democratic gains.  We've moved far beyond "it's the economy, stupid" to the once-unthinkable--movement on gay marriage, immigration, and national security.  Across issues, across demographics, Democrats have consolidated their support.


We'll see if anything changes after today's national security speeches by both the President and Cheney.  But it seems highly unlikely it could reverse this trend.