The White House on Wednesday accused Democrats who are outraged over Donald Trump’s Fourth of July parade of hating the president more than they love America.
Democrats responded, as they have in the past, by insisting that they are the true patriots for resisting Trump’s illiberal ambitions. However, a Gallup poll released this week suggests the data is on the side of Team trump.
According to the results, America’s world-famous patriotism has hit a record low. For only the second year since Gallup started keeping track in 2001, less than a majority of Americans – 45 percent – are “extremely” proud of their country. That’s down 2 points from the previous low reached in 2018.
It turns out that Democrats are mostly to blame. In the Trump era, just 51 percent of liberal voters are “extremely” (22 percent) or “very” (28 percent) proud to be American.
Republicans, meanwhile, remain as patriotic as ever: Fully 95 percent identify as more-than-moderate patriots, with 76 saying their attachment to America is extreme.
Republicans have long reported higher and more-stable level of patriotism than Democrats, while independents are somewhere in between. But after Trump entered the White House in 2017, the patriotism gap exploded, going from 11 percentage points to an unprecedented 28 points, according to Gallup.
The differential has grown every year since, reaching 44 points in this week’s Gallup survey.
By comparison, Trump hatred is nearly universal among Democrats. The latest Economist/YouGov poll showed that 82 percent disapprove of the president, 74 percent “strongly.”
How Trump made Democrats fall out of love with America
New York University Evolutionary psychologist Jonathan Haidt, a Democrat, has explained that conservatives are natural patriots because they value loyalty.
On the other hand, he said in a November 2016 interview: “Many people on the left, because they are globalists, they don’t get that the idea of the nation is something sacred. They don’t get ideas of patriotism.”
In a July 2016 essay for The American Interest, Haidt further observed that globalists often “vilify the nationalists and their patriotism as ‘racism pure and simple.'”
However, Haidt warned in his 2012 book “The Righteous Mind,” the Democrats’ moral narrow-mindedness puts them at a disadvantage in appealing to voters.
For example, he said, “Republicans since Nixon have had a near monopoly on appeals to loyalty (particularly patriotism and military virtues).”
If Haidt’s political analysis is correct, liberals looking ahead to 2020 might be wise to shut up and enjoy Trump’s Fourth of July festivities.
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