Spent the last hour or so reading through this PEW Typology study. (Via Michelle Malkin, okay, I admit it, I want to be her when I grow up.)
Gerry at DalyThoughts has a great summary of the report for people who don't want to read the whole thing. (for instance anyone in their right mind)
One thing that I noticed in the study that I found really interesting was this-
In an era when virtually all political issues are seen through partisan lenses, the political typology still finds numerous value cleavages in American society, many of which cut across party lines. In fact, public values about security and the use of military force are among the only value dimensions in which Republican and Democratic groups clearly align on opposite sides, and, even here, the intensity of opinion differs significantly within each coalition.
The divide on this subject is much clearer than any of the other issues I saw mapped out. There is a clear difference between the parties. (This takes the blame off of religious conservativism which seems like it has been blamed a lot for recent between party animosity. The Pew study shows this not exclusively a Republican value. Conservative democrats make up 15% of the population and tend to be more religious and to agree more with Republicans on issues like gay marriage. )
So it looks like the main issues dividing the country along party lines are the Use of Force and the War on Terrorism, not Terry Schiavo or Supreme Court justices. I think this is something that both parties should take note of for the 2006 and 2008 elections.