, Volume 30, Issue 2, pp 199-221
Date: 28 Nov 2007

Conflict, Fusion, or Coexistence? The Complexity of Contemporary American Conservatism

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Abstract

This paper draws on an original survey and on the 2004 NES to explore the complexity of contemporary American conservatism. In both datasets, we find evidence that economic and cultural conservatism stand as distinct strands of conservative attitudes. The original survey also allows us to further explore the role of beliefs about the market in economic conservatism. In the end, we find little support for either liberal hopes of fundamental ideological conflict among conservatives or conservative hopes of ideological fusion. Instead, our data suggests that a particular type of ideological coexistence among economic and cultural conservatives is the norm.