About all the economic discontent among working class whites

Apparently the discontent is how minorities are faring in the economy.  Some very telling graphs and analysis from Michael Tesler:

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign effectively bucked what the political scientists Donald Kinder and Lynn Sanders adroitly termed the Republican Party’s electoral temptation of race — using implicit racial appeals to win over racially conservative voters without appearing overtly racist. Trump’s play instead was to make several explicitly hostile statements about minority groups…

In the first graph, I draw on data from the 2008 Cooperative Campaign Analysis Project (CCAP) and the 2012 CCAP, along with two combined YouGov surveys that were conducted in January and June 2016. The chart compares the relationship between racial resentment and support for the eventual Republican nominee among Republicans (including independent-leaning Republicans). Racial resentment measures beliefs that race-based inequality is due to cultural deficiencies in African American communities with statements like: “Blacks could be just as well off as whites if they only tried harder.”

Consistent with a number of other studies, the chart shows a strong relationship between anti-black attitudes and support for Trump. Republicans who scored highest on racial resentment were about 30 percentage points more likely to support Trump than their more moderate counterparts in the bottom quartile of the party in racial conservatism.

That pattern is noticeably different from 2008 and 2012, when racial conservatism had a slightly negative relationship with support for the eventual GOP nominees. The upshot is that Trump was significantly more popular among the most racially resentful Republican voters than were his immediate predecessors, John McCain and Mitt Romney. [emphasis mine]

Chait, building of Tesler’s analysis:

And so, even though Trump has sprung naturally from the conservative fertile soil of racism, anti-intellectualism, and authoritarianism, his nomination is truly a sea change. No successful candidate before him has identified himself so tightly with white-identity politics. His place at the top of the ticket, and potentially as head of state, has presented fellow Republicans with an agonizing dilemma. To be sure, their choice is not comfortable. Those Republicans who have distanced themselves from the nominee, even in carefully measured increments, have endured fierce blowback from their own voters and even donors. (Eliana Johnson reports for National Review that Ted Cruz and his inner circle have been shocked at the hostility his carefully neutral, vote-your-conscience speech in regard to the man who accused his father of potentially murdering President Kennedy has provoked among his supporters.) In a party rife with racism, anti-racism is hardly considered an acceptable basis for partisan disloyalty.

What most Republican elites have always wanted is to lead a party that appeals to a majority of the country on the basis of abstract small-government, patriotic themes. Trump has revealed that this is a hopeless fantasy, and what they can lead instead is a party of racists. And they have decided, nearly every one of them, that they will take it.

And sometimes, a tongue-very firmly-in-cheek photo really does the trick:

Photo of the day

Hopefully you’ve seen some of the posts on how much Bill Clinton loved the DNC balloon drop.  Talk about a kid at heart.  From Buzzfeed:

Bill can't believe his luck. He gets to play with these balloons?

Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images

The bump is in


CLINTON RETAKES THE LEAD IN POST-DNC POLLS – The first few polls conducted completely after the Democratic convention indicate that Clinton is benefitting from the party’s week in the spotlight. A CBS poll recorded a 4-point bounce for Clinton, which, combined with a 3-point drop for Trump since their last poll, means that Clinton leads by 7 points, 46-39. Morning Consult, which had Trump up by 4 points last week, has Clinton up by 3 now. The HuffPost Pollster chart shows Clinton up by about 4 points, compared to a narrower 2-point margin last week at this time…

As with Trump’s convention bump, Clinton’s might not last either –HuffPollster: “And just as with last week’s polls, you shouldn’t get too excited or upset about sudden shifts. Convention bounces are common, and often temporary.…Trump…seemed to gain a few points off the convention, and it was enough to make the race nearly tied in the HuffPost Pollster averages, regardless of whether third-party candidates were included in the polls. Now that Clinton and the Democrats have had their turn, the polls are likely to show her in the lead, although the main question will be by how much. Some polls might not show a shift in the race. We’ll have to wait a few days to find out. If it becomes clear that Clinton’s convention bounce is substantially larger than Trump’s was, that’s probably a good sign for Democrats. If it’s about the same size as Trump’s, expect the race to remain very close.” [HuffPost]

Of course, likely worst case for Clinton, if we are back to the pre-convention status quo ante, that’s a small, but solid Clinton lead of 3-4 points.

Nate Silver:

Initial polls conducted after the Democratic National Convention suggest that Hillary Clinton has received a convention bounce. In fact, it appears likely that Clinton’s bounce will exceed Donald Trump’s, which measured at 3 to 4 percentage points. Thus, Clinton will potentially exit the conventions in a stronger position than she entered them, perhaps also making up for some of the ground she lost to Trump earlier in July. This is good news for Clinton, but we’ll need to wait a few weeks to see if she can sustain her bounce before we can conclude that the race has been fundamentally changed… [emphasis mine]

So far, however, the post-convention polls have been strong enough for Clinton that there isn’t a lot of need to worry about semantics. They suggest that she possibly holds a lead over Trump in the mid- to high single digits, instead of being tied with him…

Personally, I think polls-plus makes the most persuasive case for itself and is telling the story that best fits the evidence we have in hand. We know that the polls can be pretty wild around the party conventions. We also know that, by a few weeks after the conventions, they do a very good job of picking the eventual winner:

But we don’t have a lot of evidence about what happens when the parties hold back-to-back conventions, because it’s a relatively new development. Polls just after the 2008 conventions significantly inflated the standing of John McCain and Sarah Palin, who held their convention last. And post-convention polls in 2012 also mildly exaggerated the standing of Barack Obama and Joe Biden, when Democrats held their convention second. While our now-cast may show a relatively sudden shift toward Clinton, our other models will be more cautious, moving a couple of percentage points at a time toward Clinton if she continues to poll well over the next few weeks.
My take.  I’ll be honest, I fully expected Clinton to get a decent bounce, but mostly I’m relieved that she did.  If she had not, I would be very, very worried right now.  This race is certainly not a done deal, but these are definitely promising signs for a Clinton win (and therefore, the future of democracy in America 🙂 ).  This is still a volatile period.  Now, if the polls are still consistently showing Clinton up 5+ three weeks from now, we are really onto something.  

Why policy matters

Sure, it’s been half a week now, but I really like how Zack Beauchamp highlighted this part of Clinton’s speech:

In a section that might be some of Clinton’s best oratory ever, she managed to summarize the core of the case for her over Trump in one compelling, short paragraph.

Here’s what she said:

It is true. I sweat the details of policy, whether we’re talking about the exact level of lead in the drinking water in Flint, Michigan, the number of mental health facilities in Iowa, or the cost of your prescription drugs. Because it’s not just a detail if it’s your kid, if it’s your family. It’s a big deal. And it should be a big deal to your president.

She’s right: Nearly every policy decision a president makes has tremendous consequences for American lives. The president is an awesomely powerful office, possessing — on issues both domestic and foreign — the ability to decide who lives and who dies.

Yes!!  I came to my love of public policy late and reluctantly.  Sure, I followed it a decent amount, but through grad school I loved the fun stuff of elections, public opinion, voting, etc.  Only when I got to Texas Tech and had to teach my own course on public policy did I come to truly appreciate the subject.  Sure, following Clinton versus Trump is fun, but what matters in the end, is the policy.  And, damn, do those details matter.  If there’s one cliché I surely overuse in my policy class its, “the devil is in the details.”  This stuff really matters a whole, whole lot.  It is not just some academic exercise.  Real lives are absolutely at stake in ways large and small.  And this is why, no matter what Hillary’s flaws, I am a big fan.  To me, this is ultimately the most important part of politics, and Hillary gets it.

%d bloggers like this: