Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Class Seismic Shift in 2008 Election?

Ruy Teixeira says so in an interesting interview in 538. I don't buy the title claim for reasons I'll explain later, but there are interesting statistical trends:
  • Obama won not because white working class voters shifted towards him, but because the electorate shifted away from white working class voters (towards the college-educated middle class and people of color).
  • younger white working class voters ("Millennials," born in 1978 and after) did vote for Obama, as did their entire cohort by a huge margin of 2:1. So "help is on the way," if you care about the dumbness of white people.
  • the "country party" of rural America is as hard core conservative as ever.
Nothing about Teixeira's kind of analysis, with its "creative class" biases, will change that. These analyses have an alienating feedback effect that I wish demographers could actually take into account.

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