Well, the below graphic from the Pew Research Center explains it better than just about anything we’ve seen to date. On four issues — abortion, illegal immigration, government spending and gay marriage — there are more Republicans who say their party doesn’t do a good job than say it does.
The gap is particularly large on the latter three issues (at least 19 points on each). But even on abortion — an issue on which the party is basically united — the unhappiness is evident.
On the flip side is the Democratic Party. On all four of the very same issues, more Democrats approve of their party than disapprove. And on gay marriage and abortion, they are overwhelmingly happy — with the “good jobs” outnumbering the “not a good jobs” more than two-to-one.