Is it a snapshot of a trend or a wishful thinking beltway spin piece? Jim VandeHei's Washington Post story on Republicans losing steam among "security moms"—those old Clinton 96 voters who switched to Bush for fear that an Osama emboldened by a Kerry victory would bomb Dayton—is worth reading either way.
Marylee McCallister, a mother of three who was a Republican for 42 years until this April, already has. She voted for Bush because she believed his warnings that the Democratic nominee, Sen. John F. Kerry (Mass.), would weaken the nation.
"I was dumb," she said. "Now, granted, they came here and rammed bombs into us, but I am afraid we have gotten into something full scale which perhaps did not have to be."
One of the most curious aspects of our post-9/11 polity isn't actually fading away. That is, New Yorkers and beltway denizens who had owner's box seats for 9/11 are anti-Bush and not afraid of terrorism, while voters far, far away from any terrorist targets can see the specter of Mohammed Atta in every Denny's parking lot. They still think they could be attacked by terrorists; they're just getting more pragmatic about it, and more fed up with the Iraq war. (For the people VandeHei finds who are still quaking in fear of terrorists, I confess to a fondness for a liberal blogosphere term: "Bedwetters." I.e., tough-talking voters and pundits who run screaming and crying to the executive branch whenever a woman brings facial scrub on a plane.)