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The New "Permanent" Majority: the Democratic Party

As Stan Greenburg at the Democracy Corps explains, all the trends for key voter groups are moving in the right direction for the Democrats. We could be on the cusp of a new "permanent" majority for the Democratic Party in American politics:

Likely voters - The Democrats' lead in both the Presidential and Congressional races is undiminished in the 'core' group of the most likely voters. Usually, the Republicans cut some of the margin on Election Day because of turnout patterns, but that is not likely in 2008.

Well-educated and blue-collar voters: - Education - one of the best predictors of vote over the past decade - is losing its power, with both well-educated and blue collar voters moving to the Democrats. In the Congressional ballot, for example, the high school educated give the Democrat an 11 point lead, dropping to 10 points among those with some high school and 8 points among the college educated. In short, the rush to be done with the Republicans is turning America a little classless.

The rich - The 'opinion elite' in the country - those with a college education and earning more than $75,000 - are supporting the Democratic presidential candidate by 11 points (52 to 41 percent).

Catholics - The Democratic Presidential candidate is carrying all Catholics by 18 points and white Catholics by 13 (51 to 38 percent). This would represent a major change in political direction. In fact, the Democrat is running marginally ahead among white Catholics who attend Church every week.

Independents - The big difference in the race is independents: Presidentially, Democrats are ahead by 19 points; Congressionally, by 14 points. It is the crash with independents more than Republican defections that is driving the Republican vote down.

Young Voters - The Democrats are getting landslide margins with voters under 30; they are even winning whites under 30 by 14 points.

Married Women - One of the key blocs of 'swing' voters are married women. They are breaking marginally for the Democrats this year after swinging strongly for the Republicans in 2004. White married women are breaking even in the Presidential, and Congressionally, the Republican candidate is ahead by only 4 points.

Unmarried Women - One of the key blocs 'base' voters for Democrats are unmarried women - who could compromise a quarter of the electorate. The Democrats are winning them by two to one; they are winning white unmarried women by over 20 points.

Of all these groups, the most worrying for Republicans has to be young voters who are turning to the Democrats by huge margins. Studies have shown that people who vote in two successive elections for the same party tend to have their voting pattern set for life. There's no question that a large body of young voters cast ballots for Democratic candidates in the 2006 landslide election that threw the Republicans out of power in Congress. If Democrats can get those voters to repeat their choices for the 2008 elections it will help them build an insurmountable advantage that could last for decades.

My colleague Lee Ward posted yesterday on how grass-roots organizations like True Blue Women are springing up everywhere to help Democrats get elected and defeat Republicans. There's no question that the momentum is on our side and the Republicans are running scared.


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Comments (14)

Lee Ward:

Great report, Larkin. You notice how the right wing blogosphere IS NOT reporting these trends to their readership. We needed to get the story out more.

The GOP is content to let the conservative base choose the GOP '08 candidates, and will then push hard to bring more voters into the red fold by attacking the blue candidate.

Now that's democracy in action. The GOP will get around to woo'ing the voters, but not until AFTER they choose a candidate. They don't want those independents influencing the nomination process -- no, no....

It ain't gonna work this time, it just ain't. The move towards the blue light is so strong percentage-wise, and across the board horizontally in terms of demographics, that this has the makings of a landslide year for the blue team.

kim:

My latest theory is that Rove will go to work for Hillary. How better to get out the Republican vote?
=========================

Lee Ward:

The lying right is confident that hey can vilify Hilary enough to anger the red-state lip-biters into action.

Unfortunately, there are plenty on the left who seem quite willing to do the anti-Hillary 'water carrying' for the Republicans.

Ahh, it is good to see the old axiom of "Figures never lie, but liars figure," coupled with the equally old quote, "There are lies, damned lies, and statistics," so eloquently.

As always, for the liberals, the polls are gods, especially when favorably interpreted by an organization dedicated to ... well ... favorable-to-liberals interpretation of polling data. Funny how that works.

bryanD:

More interesting than voter trends is the alignment of the neoconservative (formerly known as neoliberal, Greenberg,et.al.) consultants in their project to co-opt the anti-war left.

Am I the only one to percieve that the Democratic candidates didn't so much go to Kos, as Kos came to the candidates, moving "right" into the establishmentarian orbit of Murdoch, just to gain a place on the Hillary train?

Yes, I'm dead right. Notice the DLC tantrum at being surplanted by Kos.

Mind you, not that the old DLC placesetting moved left, but Kos moved right.

Pro-war Kos: what will the natives think?

On the other side, if Hillary wins: pro-Democrat Fox News!

Lee Ward:

"Am I the only one to perceive that the Democratic candidates didn't so much go to Kos, as Kos came to the candidates, moving "right" into the establishmentarian orbit of Murdoch, just to gain a place on the Hillary train?"

The persistent belching from the right wing blogosphere notwithstanding, Moveon and Kos have not been the "rabid anti-war far left throwing rocks at Pelosi, Reid and Clinton" they've been made out to be - that's just more lies from the right.

So, in my view, nobody's "moved" anywhere.

There is a still a far-left contingent - ie Ma Sheehan et al, who won't be happy until we are impeaching, censuring, and cutting off funds for Iraq.

I don't see them getting their way. They claim it is now their birthright - that they put the Democrats into power in 2006 and now the Dems are reneging, but it's the centrist independents that moved left -- away from the GOP and towards the Blue Dog Dems etc., -- that "empowered" the Democrats - and you aren't going to see any candidates (except perhaps Edwards who has nothing to lose) who will try to move further left - away from those newly minted Democrat 'middle-ists'...

The threat of the far left embracing a Ralph Nader bid is what suggests to Edwards that he might be able to secure the VP spot from Clinton if he can corral and get the backing of the far left, and keep them away from Nader. I suspect he'll continue to move in that direction with that in mind.

Meanwhile, its all about elect-ability to me. A candidate is just a well-intentioned schmuck if they can't secure enough votes to win. I'm all for backing someone who can win.

bryanD:

"There is a still a far-left contingent - ie Ma Sheehan et al, who won't be happy until we are impeaching, censuring, and cutting off funds for Iraq.
I don't see them getting their way_lee"

And with Hillary's avowed pro-war stance, there's little chance to fool them for their vote, either. And Hillary is not a strong candidate to begin with, plus the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton thing. It's like Houses of York and Lancaster.

Hil needs a wide coalition because the anti-Hil vote will be large. It will include Bushbots, paleocons, and anti-war independents plus registered Hillary Haters.

Whereas the radical left will be drafting Gore or wicking votes from the Democratic base on the war issue, a'la poor Hubert Humphrey, an earlier "shoo-in".


Lee Ward:

The radical left may be able to keep Hillary out and put a Fred Thompson or a Rudy Giuliani in instead. A very real possibility, yes - IF the race is close enough to be thrown in that direction by the 2-3% radical left vote. With a Hillary/NoName as the Pres and VPres nominees, it might be.

With a Clinton/Obama ticket - less likely - in fact, if the election was held today I'd guess that a Clinton/Obama ticket would beat any Republican ticket with or without the far left playing along and voting for Hill & Barack.

15 months from now, maybe so, maybe not. Today, yes, I think so.

Having Gore in the wings, and expecting him to step in if the Democratic race is in flames, is a bad strategy imho. If the Democratic ticket is so unstable we need SuperGore to save us, the middle-ists have probably already moved back towards the right, and the advantage has been blown.

My guess is that the way for the far left to kill Clinton's chances is to employ strategies which will also have the side-effect of moving the newly-minted blue dog centrists right again. Let's swing Bush in effigy from a rope at a few Democratic rallies, and watch the Blue Dogs Dems turn red-faced and leave the party.

That's why I keep telling the anti-Clinton left to bring forward your candidate of choice and get to work -- or get on the Clinton bandwagon.

Having the far left out here as a "election spoiler if you don't play with us" will guarantee a Republican in the White house in 08, imho.

If it isn't Clinton, BD, who is it? If it's Gore - where the f8ck is he, and why isn't he running?

Lee Ward:

"As always, for the liberals, the polls are gods, especially when favorably interpreted by an organization dedicated to ... well ... favorable-to-liberals interpretation of polling data. Funny how that works."

Funny as in "Ha Ha", or funny as in "hmmm...."?

What I find funny is that a conservative would say something like that when every third post at right wing websites these days crows about the low approval rate for Congress.

That's a "Ha Ha" in my book.

bryanD:

"if the election was held today I'd guess that a Clinton/Obama ticket would beat any Republican ticket with or without the far left playing along and voting for Hill & Barack.-lee"

Veeps are inconsequential. Always have been, always will be. In a nation of optimists, nobody is ever expected to die suddenly. IMO.

But if they were: Obama: white Dems like him, blacks not so much. The cultural late-comer and upper-class mulatto with no slave heritage. A privileged UN diplomat's kid gets no props in the 'hood. That's why P Diddy rinses his online bios daily. Hillary is the surrogate Black Experience candidate (add 8%). Obama's a symbolic mis-fire except for some urban white liberals. Next to Hillary, he appears viable. A perceptual illusion. Another sign of Hillary's weakness: Obama is considered an Almost. Plus pro-war. Evening-out at Nuthin' Much.

"My guess is that the way for the far left to kill Clinton's chances is to employ strategies which will also have the side-effect of moving the newly-minted blue dog centrists right again-lee"

Hillary can't count on Blue Dogs (and none are "newly minted"; see Civil War, Reconstruction, Great Depression, or de-segregation (depends)). Their constituency is rural and pro-life. (Local: vote Dem (the residual Confederate South!); national: Conservative Christian).

(If the new media appellation Blue Dog breaks the above rules, then it's another animal they're referring to. "Unsatisfied", perhaps.)

"If it isn't Clinton, BD, who is it? If it's Gore - where the f8ck is he, and why isn't he running?-lee"

Gore would be formidable. On the heels of the Bush disaster, very, very formidable, indeed!

I admit, I'm not his biggest fan. And his cob-up-the-butt demeanor (combined with his Richie Rich backstory) can be a sword against him,

BUT: he's so SQUARE that he's hard not to like in his old age, water being washed under the bridge and all. While Hil has turned to vinegar, Gore seems well-aged.

Yeah, the Buddhists, and his grudging covering plays for Bill after Monica. Still: no hanky-panky in his own house, no draft-dodgery (went to Nam! With bodyguard, but still...), actually seems to believe what he says...

So yeah, lee, draft the Gore Bot and '08 is yours. Because though it seems '08 should go Democratic anyway, Hillary's too weak(IFFY!!!), and should the Republicans nominate a Tancredo or Huckabee or Paul...(laugh all you want) Hillary or Obama or the Trial Lawyer, are toast!

P.S. I've READ Gore has an operational campaign in reserve, but that was 3 months ago.
If he doesn't enter, he must be a finer man than I thought.

P.P.S. Really: everybody hates Hillary. Except for some suburban white wimmen who might change their mind in 5 minutes. And activists who are willing to overlook The War. THE WAR! (Very few of those Dems in my circle, but who am I?)

kim:

bD, the Gorebellied Fool is a genuine false prophet. The earth is cooling. See GISS.

The enlightenment broke the connection between the actions of the Gods and the misbehaviour of Man. Gore wants to re-establish it? The enlightenment will fight back, as soon as Steve McIntyre gets climateaudit.org back up again after the Stalinist disinformation denial of service attack.

Check it out, bD; trapped as you are in an echo chamber, your strength is your original critical thinking.
=====================

Great post Larkin. Small point - it's three elections, not two, which makes voting a habit. We've already had two such elections: 2004 young voters chose Kerry 55%-44%, and in 2006 young voters chose Democratic candidates 60%-38%.

The other thing to remember is that this isn't a static process but a rolling one. Beginning next year, every major election is a "3rd" election for SOME young voters. This should be the beginning of a shift in strategy for democrats w/r/t young voters - the first of many thirds.

Future Majority - blogging progressive youth politics.

kim:

Solons and sorons have taken buying votes to a new level.
==================================

bryanD:

"bD, the Gorebellied Fool is a genuine false prophet. The earth is cooling. See GISS."

COOLING? Tell that to the beer! Outside, even with a deluxe Coleman foam coozie, cold beer must be practically slammed back lest it becomes undrinkable in 7 minutes or less. The beer test plus 102 and nada breeze.

"Check it out, bD; trapped as you are in an echo chamber, your strength is your original critical thinking."

I'm not trapped:

http://www.publicproxyservers.com/page1.html

however, it is strangely fascinating to watch the lobotomized, argument-free (basically) big board go right down the crapper amidst swirls of party-fed, made-up "controversies" and (worse,) "human interest" pieces. I won't be suprised if Peggy Hill joins The Team soon.

So it's pretty bad, which saves me 1 hour surfing elsewhere, yet when you least expect it, when the back-slapping gets too delusional and even more unwarranted, I'll return to make jhow foam and CCG cry and Jay Tea rip his pants (at work. on Big Meeting day. front to back.)

I'll test with another name. Something from the English Civil Wars. Not Prince Rupert, though. Too easy to make fun of.

"Ireton" is pretty apt for the role.


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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