Advancing a Free Society

Analysis of the 2012 General Election

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Nearly everything you read about [political] polarization...is wrong, or at least incomplete or misinterpreted," remarks Hoover Senior Fellow Morris Fiorina. Fiorina and two of his Hoover colleagues, David Brady and Tammy Frisby, sat down the day after the Florida primary to talk about American politics and the 2012 election. Stepping back from the blow-by-blow coverage of the presidential campaigns, Brady, Fiorina, and Frisby discuss how underlying conditions and both continuity and change in American politics are shaping the Republican primary, the prospects for the November 2012 general election, and races for seats in the 113th Congress.

This is part 2 of 3, discussing the 2012 Republican primary.  Part 1 covers the 2012 Republican primary, and part 3 looks at House and Senate races.

In part 2 shown here, Brady, Fiorina, and Frisby consider the following questions:

  • Why are independent voters so important in this election and what’s important to them?
  • How has the continuing debate over health care reform shaped the Republican primary and what is it likely to mean for the general election?
  • Why have so many of the Republican party’s brightest stars, including Mitch Daniels, Chris Christie, and Jeb Bush, decided to sit this one out?