New Figures Argue Democrats Should Target College Graduates in Suburbs

Austin Texas suburb
Suburb of Austin, Texas (Shutterstock/Roschetzky Photography)

Amy Walter reports for The Cook Political Report that a Pew Research assessment of the 2016 electorate belies some of the insights we thought we had gleaned from that year’s exit polls:

  • Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump didn’t actually split the white college-educated vote. Clinton bested Trump by 17 points.
  • They did split the white women’s vote, 45-47 percent. Exit polls suggested Trump was more popular with white women.
  • The exit polls probably overestimated the electorate’s share of white college graduates.

The revised figures argue that Trump hasn’t lost support from college-educated whites and white women. Fewer supported him to begin with.

The exit polls and Pew’s data do agree that Trump has lost support from white voters without a college degree: from 66-64 to 57 percent. Read more “New Figures Argue Democrats Should Target College Graduates in Suburbs”

Season of Discontent: Parallels Between Brexit and Trump

British parliament London
Westminster Palace in London, England (Unsplash/Matt Milton)

The winter of 1978-79 is remembered in Britain as the Winter of Discontent. There were mass strikes and inflation spiraled out of control. The situation led to the election of Margaret Thatcher that spring and the rise of neoliberal policies.

Could the summer and autumn of this year one day be remembered in a similar way?

In both Britain and the United States, there have been revolts against the establishment and the status quo, leading to calls for radical change. Read more “Season of Discontent: Parallels Between Brexit and Trump”

Demographics Worked in Clinton’s Favor — But Not Enough

Hillary Clinton
American secretary of state Hillary Clinton speaks at a summit of Pacific nations in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, July 11, 2012 (State Department/William Ng)

Donald Trump’s election has thrown into doubt the assumption that Democrats were emerging as America’s natural ruling party from a confluence of demographic and social changes.

I argued here last month that Trump’s candidacy was accelerating trends that could reshape the two-party system: the consolidation of lower-educated white voters in the Republican Party and the flight of college-educated whites and minority voters to the Democrats.

Many — myself included — predicted that these shifts would hand the election to Hillary Clinton.

That obviously didn’t happen. Was the theory wrong? Read more “Demographics Worked in Clinton’s Favor — But Not Enough”

What Democrats Did Wrong And What We Must Do Now

Democratic voters Davidson North Carolina
Democratic voters in Davidson, North Carolina listen to a speech, October 12 (Hillary for America/Alyssa S.)

#notmypresident is only the latest in a string of absurd mistakes we on the left are making. We lost; yes, we won the popular vote, but we’ve all known since 2000 that the system allowed that. We have the power to do something about that in 2009-11, when we had a supermajority, but we lost focus, we forgot and now we’re here.

So we need to take responsibility for our own mistakes. In an age of atonement for progressives, we must first list our mistakes so we can understand why we lost. Here are the three biggest ones:

  • We became the party of Obama, not the party of progressives.
  • We allowed our activist allies to hijack the media narrative and alienated our passive allies in Middle America.
  • We lost focus on equality and became more obsessed with social justice, which are not always the same things. Read more “What Democrats Did Wrong And What We Must Do Now”

Doubtful Fewer Latinos Turned Out for Clinton

Hillary Clinton
Former American secretary of state Hillary Clinton gives a speech in Iowa, January 23 (Hillary for America/Barbara Kinney)

Exit poll data on election night suggested that Hillary Clinton had fared unexpectedly poorly with Latino voters whom her opponent, Donald Trump, had disparaged throughout the presidential campaign.

As reported by CNN, which commissioned Edison Research for the exit poll together with other national media outlets, only 65 percent of Latinos reportedly supported Clinton against 29 percent for Trump.

That would be worse than Barack Obama did four years ago. He got 71 percent of the Latino vote against 27 percent for Mitt Romney.

The exit poll also said that Hispanic turnout had barely increased from 2012.

Both findings fly in the face of various preelection polls, which had predicted that Latinos would turn out in higher numbers and overwhelmingly back Clinton.

It’s possible they did and the exit poll got it wrong. Read more “Doubtful Fewer Latinos Turned Out for Clinton”

Liberal America Unwittingly Radicalized Trumpland

Donald Trump
Portrait of Donald Trump in West Des Moines, Iowa, January 23 (Tony Webster)

When it became clear Tuesday night that Donald Trump was going to defeat Hillary Clinton in the big industrial states of the American Midwest — Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin — I thought of the way Barack Obama had triumphed there four years ago.

His opponent, Mitt Romney, was a decent and thoughtful man who I supported for president. It bothered me at the time that Democrats were portraying him — insincerely, it seemed to me — as a heartless plutocrat. But that’s how Obama won over the white working class in the very states Clinton lost on Tuesday.

I sensed there was a connection between the vilification of Mitt Romney and the victory of Donald Trump, but I couldn’t put my finger on it until I read this quote from a conservative voter in The Atlantic:

Give people the impression that you will hate them the same or nearly so for voting Jeb Bush as compared to voting for Trump and where is the motivation to be socially acceptable with Jeb?

It is now starting to sink in that liberal America unwittingly radicalized Trumpland. Read more “Liberal America Unwittingly Radicalized Trumpland”

What Just Happened in America?

Donald Trump
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech in Phoenix, Arizona, October 29, 2016 (Gage Skidmore)

The blog originally began with a simple vision: complicated foreign policy analysis stuffed with swears to soften the otherwise indigestible material. As the years have worn on, I’ve largely dropped that approach.

But I feel we deserve the old way today.

So let’s start to dig through the rubble and figure out what the fuck just happened in America. Read more “What Just Happened in America?”

Middle-Income Suburbanites Decided the Election — Again

Austin Texas suburb
Suburb of Austin, Texas (Shutterstock/Roschetzky Photography)

On election night, when it was starting to become clear Donald Trump would win, I wrote it had been a mistake to think Hillary Clinton could make up for losing white working-class voters in the “Rust Belt” by drawing more minority and young voters to the polls, particularly in the “Sun Belt” states.

Clinton didn’t win Florida. She didn’t win North Carolina. She didn’t make Arizona and Texas more competitive for Democrats. And she was so unpopular with white voters, especially those without a college degree, that one-time Democratic strongholds in the Northeast — Michigan and Pennsylvania — changed sides.

Looking more closely at what happened on Tuesday, though, I’m not sure this is what doomed her. Read more “Middle-Income Suburbanites Decided the Election — Again”

World Comes to Terms with Shock Trump Victory

Donald Trump
Donald Trump gives a speech in Derry, New Hampshire, August 19, 2015 (Michael Vadon)

Trump Defeats Clinton in Unexpectedly Close Election

  • Americans have chosen Republican businessman Donald Trump to succeed Barack Obama as president. Trump won 306 electoral votes with 46 percent support against 232 electoral votes and 48 percent support for Democrat Hillary Clinton.
  • Clinton fell short in key states, including Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and North Carolina.
  • Republicans also defended their majorities in Congress. They are projected to win 236 seats in the House of Representatives, where 218 are needed for a majority, and 51 seats in the Senate. Read more “Trump Defeats Clinton in Unexpectedly Close Election”