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Dawgs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:24 PM
Original message
Did "Reagen Democrats" really exist?
I'm fairly young, so I'm not sure, but what was a "Reagen Democrat".

Did they really exist as today's Republican likes to describe (working class, fiscally responsible, pro-family types), or is it a made up term by the Hannitys of the world that want to claim that Democrats in the 80's liked Reagen just as much as they do?
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WI_DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:25 PM
Response to Original message
1. Yes, I'm afraid they did.
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:27 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. gotta love the description. "Working class, fiscally responsible, family values"
if any of that were actually true, they wouldn't have voted for Reagan.

A better description would be "sheep" and "easily manipulated"
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bryant69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #3
16. I think it's helpful to look at how Carter looked in 1980
In all fairness.

Bryant
Check it out --> http://politicalcomment.blogspot.com
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #16
23. even if that were the case, why did they vote for him AGAIN in 84?
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bryant69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #23
26. I think your disdain for Reagan, well justified though it is,
might be blinding you to his strengths, to the state of the nation in 1984, and to the weaknesses of Walter Mondale.

Bryant
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #26
37. his most successful speeches were based on lies, that was the "strength"
he was a complete phony and a puppet.

How much money do you think he was able to fundraise, and how many votes did he get, from his infamous "welfare queen" lie, for example?
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bryant69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:44 PM
Response to Reply #37
38. I can see that your mind is made up
Bryant
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:46 PM
Response to Reply #38
39. lol, if you wanna worhip at the Church of Reagan, you might try watching Hannity
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 03:49 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. insult me all you want. I'm not the one still delusional enough to think he was a great man.
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bryant69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 06:18 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. OK let me run this down again.
Reagan was not a great man. The policies and principles he espoused were bad for Americans, particularly working class Americans. Claiming that I said he was a great man, particularly right after a deleted post is disingenuous at best.

Reagan was, however, a skilled man. He had political skills as a President that lead to his success. And unlike Rove some of those skills are things that Democrats could use. He had a way of talking about America that most Americans responded to. He also benefited from events during his Presidency. Saying that he was a skilled man and that his success as a politician was due to factors beyond Americans being sheep is not saying he was a great man.

If you or anybody chooses to prefer simplistic fairy tales in which Republicans are always drooling morons and the American people naive dupes or pathetic sheeple, that is your right. However, I would request that if you are going to do so, refrain from serious discussion of politics as you would add little with your naive and simplistic world view.

Bryant
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damntexdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 03:47 PM
Response to Reply #3
41. Yeah, they did exist:
Working class, fiscally responsible, family values, easily manipulated sheep.
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:25 PM
Response to Original message
2. well, someone voted for that asshole, and it wasn't just Repigs
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madinmaryland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
4. It was a term that was coined in the early 80's after Reagan's election.
It was used to refer to the conservative/southern democrats that moved to the repub party. They may have also been George Wallace supporters in the 60's and 70's.

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WI_DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. many were also from industrialized blue collar/ethnic areas of the MW
but yes, some of those were people who supported George Wallace in '68 and then again in '72 (remember in '72 Wallace won the Michigan primary).
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #4
21. So that explains Regean's wins in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, etc.
how, exactly?

No - a Reagan Democrat wasn't limted to the South.
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Burma Jones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:28 PM
Response to Original message
5. Sure they existed
Edited on Thu Mar-15-07 01:32 PM by new_beawr
Mostly Blue Collar folks that benefited from FDR, Unions and the Democratic Party. Broke away starting with Civil Rights and the nomination of McGovern. Not just southern by any means, think of NY guys in hard hats stereotypes. The Reagan Democrat may have eventually disagreed with the war in Viet Nam, but he/she despised the college students that protested the war. These folks are still a very powerful voting bloc and are why the Kerry, Billionaire Husband on a Jet Ski image was so potent and the Dukakis in a Tank too....
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GregD Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:29 PM
Response to Original message
6. You bet there were.
There's one just up the street from me. He's a registered Dem but he votes Repuke and loves Reagan.
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liberaliraqvet26 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:29 PM
Response to Original message
8. Yes my father was one...
thankfully, he has since seen the error of his ways. They used race baiting and ensnared a lot of working class whites.
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Sammy Pepys Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:30 PM
Response to Original message
9. Yup...
Some Dems had a falling out with the party after Carter, and the "Reagan Democrat" was born.
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WI_DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:36 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. It goes back before Carter. It certainly was in effect in '72 with so-called "Nixon Democrats"
These were people, as someone pointed out in an earlier response, who basically were fed up with what they felt was the leftward movement of the Democratic party and with the parties emphasize on civil rights. Carter actually got the old democratic coalition back in '76, but lost it in '80.
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Sammy Pepys Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #14
27. I was thinking of "Reagan Democrats" in their purest form...
Democrats who supported Reagan.
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kenny blankenship Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
10. Oh they did exist: Working class people who ordinarily voted Democratic
Edited on Thu Mar-15-07 01:57 PM by kenny blankenship
because Democrats safeguarded their jobs, their unions, and their access to middle class living standards and opportunities for their kids, but who responded to Reagan's various charms (eg: his race baiting rants against "welfare queens", and his promises to take America back to simpler times when minorities knew their place, when criminals were dealt with by the police with broad discretion, and when illegal abortions frequently killed or maimed the pregnant women who sought them). In embracing Reagan (mainly over social issues), they empowered an ideology that placed the freedom of capital (an issue of political economy) above the common good and even above national sovereignty, and in so doing they slit their own throats. The result has been that the richest people and corporations totally dominate the politics of the country--not only do they have an almost exclusive influence over what happens, but the notion that the few have an inherently superior right to totally dominate what our government does, and to direct it towards their own exclusive benefit, took hold simultaneously. That was the Reagan Revolution. It used to be what's good for General Motors is good for the country--because implicitly it was good for full employment. With the Reagan Revolutio that became: What's good for Gordan Gecko is GOOD, PERIOD and not to be questioned, no matter if it turns out to be beneficial to the rest of the country in any way. The American Republic which had governed in the interests of the greatest number of citizens--or at least was in theory accountable to that standard--which had persisted since the collapse of capitalism in the Great Depression, and which had led the world victoriously in the fights first against Authoritarianism from the Right and then Authoritarianism from the Left, was dead. A new Authoritarianism of global capital which is freed from harrassment from national sovereignty and which treats the populations of countries as cannon fodder (us here in the U.S.) or as raw material for dogfood, sprang up over the corpse of America.
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baldguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
11. Yes.
Working-class mooks who have been and still are bamboozled by the GOP, the punditry & the media to believe the neocon party line and to vote against their interests. Their take-home pay has gone down, their kids can't afford college so work for min. wage at Walmart or they're in Iraq, their costs for food, housing and energy have doubled & tripled, and their jobs are being shipped overseas.

But at least the queers can't get married!
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Fovea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
12. The same 'Dems'
who listen when Karl Rove baits homosexuals and non white Americans listened when his predicessor Lee Atwater did the same things.

What they didn't have was the media. So they went out and bought it, after Regan killed the fairness doctrine.

Now they have Faux, CNN, etc.
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Drifter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:35 PM
Response to Original message
13. I'm a Reagan Democrat ...
If it wasn't for Reagan ... I wouldn't be a Democrat.

I can not image how a "real" Democrat would have been able to support Reagan.

Cheers
Drifter
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gatorboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #13
24. Oh, snap!
Smartest thing I've heard. Growing up in an Uber Democrat family, Raygun's name was equivalent to Voldemort.
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SteppingRazor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
15. Yes, but I think it's more accurate to call them "Nixon Democrats"...
after all, Reagan's huge wins in 1980 and 1984 are mostly attributable to the successful extension of Nixon's Southern Strategy.
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #15
25. So, the Southern Strategy was used for Reagan's wins in Michigan
Edited on Thu Mar-15-07 01:47 PM by Clark2008
and Pennsylvania?

How does that work?

Honestly - this "Southern Strategy" crap didn't work - unless you think it worked 30 years later - you know, the first time that the South voted Republican in a bloc was in 2000. The South mostly supported Clinton - both times.
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SteppingRazor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #25
33. Clinton would've won without a single southern state -- both times
The southern strategy isn't just an appeal to the south. It's an appeal to racist whites everywhere. To quote Lee Atwater: "You start out in 1954 by saying, "Nigger, nigger, nigger." By 1968 you can't say 'nigger'that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states' rights and all that stuff. You're getting so abstract now you're talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you're talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is blacks get hurt worse than whites. ... And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I'm not saying that. But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow mebecause obviously sitting around saying, "We want to cut this," is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than Nigger, nigger."

So that, by the time Atwater and Reagan came along, their idiotic economic proposals were seen in the same light as the N word was in 1954.

And it's pretty tough to say that Reagan didn't run a racist campaign, no? Remember where he started his campaign from? How about those welfare queens?
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Hamlette Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:40 PM
Response to Original message
17. We called my dad a reagan Democrat because Reagan turned him into a dem
what freaked my dad out was the gippers irresponsible talk about war.

Lucky for him he didn't live to see his spawn act on that talk.
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:41 PM
Response to Original message
18. Yes - my Dad was one. Mom stuck with Carter.
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BlueManDude Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:41 PM
Response to Original message
19. Yes, but many gradually realized that the GOP worked against
their economic interest. You can only play the wedge issues for so long.
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:43 PM
Response to Original message
20. Reagan was a simple guy with simple answers for simpletons.
As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron. - H.L. Mencken
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leftofthedial Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:45 PM
Response to Original message
22. alas yes
the democratic party allowed the repukes to convince millions of working Americans to vote against their own best interests

coupled with the gutting of unions, this was the driver that allowed a generation of repuke gains, evening the political scales enough for their rigged voting scams to swing elections pretty much at will

the democratic party still has not recovered (nor has America) from its abandonment of American workers
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Rabbit of Caerbannog Donating Member (742 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:52 PM
Response to Original message
28. My siblings claimed to be "Democrats for Bush" when
they voted for him in the last TWO elections. My brother is also a "Democrat" who idolizes Rush. Apparently we have a lot of mental illness in our family...
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Strawman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:52 PM
Response to Original message
29. Unfortunately yes. Lots of them in my area
Edited on Thu Mar-15-07 01:56 PM by Strawman
Macomb County, MI. I think the term was invented by Stanley Greenberg to describe people in my blue-collar neighborhod.

In a nutshell, these so called "Reagan Democrats" basically like complaining about blacks more than they like having jobs with living wages, health care, a clean environment, safe workplaces etc.. They're fucking morons. Poorly educated, anti-intellectual, selfish, and bigoted in every way imaginable. Classic petty bourgeios types.

They were traditionally Democrats because they used to be in unions that effectively persuaded them to vote Democratic. They used to at least understand what side their bread was buttered on. Then Nixon and Reagan convinced them that they ought to be tired of taking shit from blacks and liberals and other countries rather than worrying about the boss who was busy downsizing and union busting with Republican help. The boss was replaced as the political villian by welfare queens, Iranian terrorists, gays, abortion doctors, and hippie liberal college types. All those old-school Democratic policies let them live like Republicans, and Reagan and Nixon and Limpballs convinced them that they were Republicans by flattering them and exploiting their anxieties and ignorant fears and hatreds.
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:54 PM
Response to Original message
30. My husband even voted for him...
(That was before my time, of course.) I've since educated him on the error of his ways.
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gollygee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:56 PM
Response to Original message
31. Yes - my dad was one
still is to some extent. He's a swing voter now, but before Regan he voted 100% Democratic, and even volunteered at the county Democratic headquarters.

Since then, he has voted Republican for president until Bush 43. He didn't vote for him either time.
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etherealtruth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
32. I hail from Macomb County Michigan ....
Sadly, the home of the Reagan Democrats ... Yes, Dawgs, there really were Reagan Democrats.

From Wiki (Reagan Democrats):
The classic study of Reagan Democrats is probably the work of the Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg. Greenberg analyzed white ethnic voters (largely unionized auto workers) in Macomb County, Michigan, just north of Detroit. The county voted 63 percent for John F. Kennedy in 1960, but 66 percent for Reagan in 1984. He concluded that "Reagan Democrats" no longer saw Democrats as champions of their middle-class aspirations, but instead saw them as working primarily for the benefit of others: the very poor, the unemployed, African Americans, and other political pressure groups. In addition, Reagan Democrats enjoyed gains during the period of economic prosperity that coincided with the Reagan administration following the "malaise" of the Carter administration. They also supported Reagan's strong stance on national security and opposed the 1980s Democratic Party on such issues as pornography, crime, and taxes.

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mohinoaklawnillinois Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:04 PM
Response to Original message
34. Oh yeah, they existed..
I remember my Dad, a precint captain in the 18th Ward in Chicago, being completely disgusted during the 1980 election. People that he had known for years in his precinct supported and voted for "that fool" as my beloved Daddy called him.

Most of these people were just like himself, working class, grew up during the Depression, fought in WWII, etc but they all bought into the BS that "fool" spewed about "morning in America", etc.

Racism was another key here, the neighborhood was beginning to become integrated and these white, working class folks weren't happy about it. One other thing that played into this as well was the Iran hostage crisis.

Daddy hung on until 1984, but after that, he just gave up. He retired from his job and from being a precinct captain. He just couldn't take it anymore.
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Old and In the Way Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:15 PM
Response to Original message
35. Many people bought the "image".
What can you say? Republicans may have shitty policies, but they know how to market. Reagan had good, old folksy charm....he was well known because of his acting career. Plus a lot of people like the way he hammered the Free Speech movement when he was governor of California.

People have been buying the RW marketing of their candidates since Nixon. Maybe we're finally, with the advent of the internet, getting more truth back into the message.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-15-07 02:29 PM
Response to Original message
36. The economy was AWFUL in 1980
Very similar to today - except they told the truth about the unemployment rates. It's the only time in my life where I literally could not find a job. I ended up working as a maid. Carter also was not that union friendly, so he allowed the unions to take the blame for inflation and factories closing. Now we see all our money going to Iraq. Back then they thought all the money was going to the new "Great Society". It really was a mess. I didn't vote for Reagan, I lived in CA when he was Governor. But my husband was taken in by him in his first term. That's the last time he ever believed what a Republican had to say though.
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