I’ve read a bunch of articles discussing whether the Democrat victory in the recent election is indicative of a general political shift, or whether it’s the result of correctable Republican errors. This seems to be missing the larger picture: that regardless of errors (and there have been many), the Republican party under George W. Bush has changed politically.
These pundits are wondering whether the American people are changing (“Or have the Republican scandals and the Bush administration’s misadventure in Iraq brought to the surface trends that will lead to a new political majority”). The people aren’t changing — it’s the Republican party that is moving out from under them! Whether you agree with them or not, adventurism (a loaded word; perhaps “idealism” is better) in foreign policy and new social programs are the domain of the Democrats. The problem the Republican party faces is that it’s now the Democrat party, but with a different social agenda. Voters are slowing accepting this and figuring out what to do.
So it might be a new party majority, but surely not a political majority: the voters desires aren’t changing; there just isn’t any party that reflects them, and the Dems are the best fit right now.