Shift in White Working Class Voters, Not Turnout, Helped Lead Trump to Victory

The New York Times Upshot reports that nearly one in four white, working class voters who supported President Obama’s reelection in 2012 abandoned the Democratic party in the 2016 presidential election, selecting either Donald Trump or a third-party candidate. It is this shift, not a major change in expected turnout, that propelled Mr. Trump to victory in the 2016 presidential election.

The Upshot reached this conclusion by reviewing actual voter files, comparing those to The Upshot’s pre-election turnout projections in Florida, Pennsylvania and North Carolina. The turnout patterns in these three states are representative of broader trends throughout the nation, according to the analysis.

1 Comment on Shift in White Working Class Voters, Not Turnout, Helped Lead Trump to Victory

  1. Voter turnout in 2016 was the second-highest in the past half-century, after the 62.2 percent who turned out in 2008. Voter turnout topped 62 percent in all three presidential contests held in the 1960s, the most recent surge in voter participation.

    About 139 million Americans, or 60.2 percent of the voting-eligible population, cast a ballot in November’s elections, according to data compiled by the U.S. Elections Project. That compares with 58.6 percent of eligible voters who turned out in 2012.
    Researchers from the group Nonprofit Vote, which promotes voter participation and policies that will increase turnout, said states where more people showed up shared one of two similarities: They were either battleground states, or they allowed voters to register and cast ballots on the same day.
    Voter participation in the 15 states with same-day registration laws on the books was 7 percentage points higher than in states where voters have to register weeks before Election Day. In battleground states, turnout hit 65 percent, 5 points higher than in nonbattleground states.

    The voter registration deadline is a much bigger voter suppression” than voter ID laws,George Pillsbury, a consultant to Nonprofit Vote, said.

    So we must push for voter registration deadline and voter ID laws.
    This is a small list of racist things requiring ID –
    Boarding an airplane, bus, or train.
    Buying alcohol or cigs.
    Opening a bank acct or any transaction at a bank.
    Getting a fishing or hunting license.
    Buying, driving, renting a car.
    Registering in a motel or hotel.

    You just can’t make this shit up.
    Why Do Many Minorities Lack ID According to White Liberals

    Because a lot of minorities don’t have much use for them. The most common voter ID is a driver’s license, and minorities are less likely to drive. A 2007 study found that in California, New Mexico, and Washington, whites were more likely to have driver’s licenses than nonwhites.

    Students are less likely to have driver’s licenses for the same reasons (plus the fact that they can sometimes rely on student IDs, and may just have not gotten around to getting a driver’s license yet). Moreover, minorities may be more likely to have lost their driver’s licenses: The Wisconsin study found that an estimated 8 percent of Hispanic adults and 17 percent of African-American adults had no current license but had a recent suspension or revocation. Almost half of suspended driver’s licenses were due to failure to pay outstanding fines, which may explain why poor people are less likely to have licenses.

    For voters who need to secure a valid ID, tracking down the necessary documents—such as a birth certificate and social security card—can take time and money, and the Brennan Center additionally reports that many voting centers are far away from minority voters and are rarely open. Minorities also move from state to state more frequently, which makes meeting varying requirements for documentation more difficult, and Hispanics often use different naming customs, which can make for additional confusion at the DMV or voting booth. Additionally, the Brennan Center suggests that minority voters are more likely to be carded at the polls.

    Of course, minority voters aren’t the only group likely to be disenfranchised. Seniors, for example, are also less likely to drive. Academic studies suggest that voter ID laws do probably reduce turnout, both among Democrats and Republicans, but not by more than about 2 percent.


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