One reason for this is that while Republican voters overwhelmingly consider themselves conservative, only 56% of conservative voters consider themselves to be Republicans. In other words, nearly half of all conservatives nationwide reject the Republican Party label.
I would be included in that group. Whenever I'm asked what party that I'm affiliated with, I just say that I'm a conservative. I do vote for Republicans, most of the time, but I feel that many of them have gone to Washington to change it but Washington changed them. Many conservatives believe that the GOP has lost its Republican roots.
What about the rest of the Americans that don't call themselves Republicans?
Of all the non-Republicans in the nation, 31% consider themselves at least somewhat conservative while 37% say they’re political moderates.
So, it seems that America hasn't moved that far to the left. We are still a center-right nation. People believe that it is the GOP that has moved to the left, and the the rise of the conservative Doug Hoffman and the fall of the liberal Republican Dede Scozzafava in the NY23 race seems to confirm this theory. The people of the 23rd district of New York have picked the conservative over the "moderate". On Tuesday, if the polls hold up, they will choose Hoffman over the Pelosi-backed Bill Owens.