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At the half-century mark of Converse's (1964) field-defining essay, the nature of political ideology in the mass public remains enigmatic. To test the ideological structure of American public opinion, I develop and implement two new scaling methods that, in contrast to many of the existing approaches, account for the ordinal nature of survey responses and explicitly incorporate the spatial model of voting. My results indicate that over the last thirty years, mass political attitudes have increasingly conformed to a unidimensional ideological structure. As among political elites, the liberal-conservative dimension has come to encompass a wide range of policy and value divides in the mass public. I also present evidence that survey respondents systematically distort their placements of political stimuli and themselves on issue scales (like the standard liberal-conservative scale) in a way that understates the true level of polarization in the contemporary American electorate.