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Luntz Polling: Americans Are More Willing to Vote for Socialists
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October 19, 2015, 07:02 AM
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It’s interesting to see that Americans have become more open to socialism — pollster Frank Luntz found that nearly half of citizens would consider voting for a socialist candidate. Luntz thinks that outspoken socialist Bernie Sanders has charmed the voters with his persuasiveness and that accounts for much of the change, along with convenient political redefinitions.

However, there’s a longer history of leftism being treated kindly by the press. The crimes of the left have never been presented by the media as a major evil: Hitler gets the monster treatment, while his mass-murder equals Mao and Stalin get a pass.

In addition, capitalism has not been working very well for average Americans in recent years. Real wages have remained stagnant since the seventies, and the middle class continues to shrink.

In the minds of many people, capitalism means the global economy forced upon us by the elites, in the form of immigration and outsourcing over decades that has been entirely negative for average Americans: jobs that couldn’t be sent overseas have been given to inexpensive immigrant workers. Meanwhile, the rich have done very well under the globalization they promoted.

Frank Luntz discussed his poll findings with Tucker Carlson on Fox News Saturday.

https://youtu.be/_cK2-KnRCFg

CARLSON: Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says he’s a democratic socialist. What do voters think? That used to be a really scary word — is it still? Pollster Frank Luntz spoke with a lot of people about this issue and he’s got the very latest from his research on it. Great to see you, Frank.

LUNTZ: Thank you and what we found is that 47 percent of Americans now would consider — 46 percent — would consider voting for a socialist. It is no longer this demonized word and Bernie Sanders has completely changed it. You got the numbers there from June and I believe that those numbers have even increased. So we ask Democrats in our focus group we did a few days ago which is preferable socialism or capitalism and to my shock, more of them preferred socialism — that’s how much the Democratic Party’s changed.

CARLSON: It just says a lot, I mean socialists, in the name of socialism, 80 million people were murdered last century. It wasn’t that long ago, we both remember, we’re not that old.

LUNTZ: But that’s not the socialism they’re speaking of. So they’ll make the argument that having a police force is socialist because we’re paying for the common good and having a military is socialist, so they’re redefining what the terminology means, and they also believe that capitalism has failed because of this income inequality of CEOs making many millions of dollars and people still working at minimum wage.

CARLSON: Well of course socialism has always been about arming the powerful; it’s always a species of fascism. It doesn’t surprise me there are more guns for the government

LUNTZ: You keep going back 50 years, a hundred years — for them it’s what’s wrong with society today. And what i find interesting, and I’ve said to conservatives stop calling it crony capitalism because they don’t necessarily hear the word crony and it makes them think more negative of the word capitalism. The fact is to people capitalism is about profit and about Wall Street, rather than about opportunity and free markets, It’s far better to talk about economic freedom or financial freedom than it is capitalism.

Tucker, our definitions are changing in politics because of this campaign. Donald Trump is having an impact, Bernie Sanders is having an impact and what we think in November of 2016 can be very different than October 2015

CARLSON: I completely agree with you. Let’s just give the party breakdown here. This is a question: would you be willing to vote for a socialist. Fifty-nine percent of Democrats say yes, 49 percent of independents — that’s really striking — and 26 percent of Republicans. What is going on?

LUNTZ: What happened to Republicans? Yes it’s because capitalism in capitalism has been so demonized and so ripped apart by pundits in the media and even by candidates that socialism is no longer that horrible concept.

CARLSON: A lot of this has gotta be a hangover from the 2008 financial crisis and its gotta be

LUNTZ: And the fact that nobody went to jail which both Republicans and Democrats agree on that some of those people who perpetrated those financial disasters should have been held accountable and Tucker, without accountability, without personal responsibility, capitalism will continue to fall and socialism will continue to rise. It’s frightening but it’s true.

CARLSON: It’s sort of interesting, but when Martha Stewart goes to jail for financial crimes but nobody goes after 2008 it does sort of raise questions.