Half of Conservatives Would Compromise to Get Economy Moving
MACKINAC ISLAND, Mich. -- A significant proportion of conservative Republican activists say they would be willing to compromise and vote for a candidate who does not follow party orthodoxy on social issues in order to get the economy back on track, according to a straw poll conducted at the biennial Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference.
The National Journal Hotline/National Association of Home Builders Straw Poll showed conference attendees were evenly divided on whether they could support a presidential candidate who would improve the county's economic woes, but was also in favor of same-sex marriage and abortion rights.
The results were an indication that while the group overwhelmingly identified themselves as conservative, many were guided by practicality in their decision-making.
The group of 681 voting-age conference attendees surveyed here on Friday and Saturday, was split nearly down the middle over whether they would vote for a Republican presidential candidate who could solve the country's economic outlook, but who disagreed with them on key social issues.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won the straw poll by a wide margin, taking 51 percent of the vote. Romney took 47 percent among voters who identified themselves as conservative, and a whopping 73 percent among voters who identified themselves as moderate Republicans.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry was the only other candidate who scored in double digits among either group. Perry won 18 percent of conservative voters and 10 percent of self-described moderates.