Here’s One Reason It’s So Hard to Pass Liberal Legislation

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Via Dylan Matthews, here’s an interesting set of charts from a pair of researchers who studied how people feel about various issues vs. how politicians think they feel. The left-hand chart, for example, shows opinions about universal health care. In districts where 50 percent of the voters supported it, liberal politicians estimated that only 45 percent supported it, while conservative politicians estimated that only about 30 percent supported it. This same gap shows up across the entire spectrum, and for a wide variety of issues.

As always, this is one data point from one study. But it certainly seems to suggest either that conservative voters are a lot louder than liberal voters or that politicians themselves simply don’t understand how quickly some of these attitudes are changing. Needless to say, if these results are generally true, it tells us a lot about why it’s so hard to get liberal legislation passed.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

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ONE MORE QUICK THING:

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As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

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