What’s up with deep Southern college-educated whites

So, I posted that cool Survey Monkey map the other day, but I was really struck by this one, I didn’t post.  I was reminded of it due to this Ronald Brownstein tweet:

Anyway, here’s the map— Electoral college map by college-educated whites:


Damn!  What is with those deep Southern whites?!  I already knew this on an intellectual level (i.e., 90% of whites in Mississipi are Republican, which obviously means most all the college-educated ones are as well), but it still is striking to see visually. Is this just the power of evangelical Christianity?  Racial resentment?  ‘

If I wasn’t hopelessly behind on half-a-dozen different things, I’d have to play around with the 2012 NES data.  Maybe, I still will.  This is a map I want to understand better.



About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

4 Responses to What’s up with deep Southern college-educated whites

  1. jeffbc94 says:

    Commenting only because the ad that showed up when I clicked this link was for an event that is happening in my building next month! I know that means nothing, but I thought it was cool!

  2. R. Jenrette says:

    “What is up with those deep southern whites?”
    Their power structure is more threatened because there are many more black voters in those states percentage wise.
    And then there’s tradition and social pressure on non conformist whites.

    • Steve Greene says:

      Very hard not to imagine an important racial-cultural component.

      • ohwilleke says:

        Certainly. Race and culture – with modern day carpet baggers providing the few white Southern exceptions. The phenomena of bloc voting by racial groups has been noted in law journals in election law articles for decades. Shapiro notes it in the Yale Law Journal in 1984 for example https://www.jstor.org/stable/796320?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

        Fair Vote notes: “Racially polarized voting/racial bloc voting: Circumstances where the voting preferences of a particular group consistently vary from the preferences of other groups. When a white majority consistently defeats the preferences of a racial minority that is protected under the Voting Rights Act, a jurisdiction may need to change its district plan and/or electoral structure under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act.”

        Religion surely plays a part. Few other regions of the country has so few Jews, Muslims, Quakers, Catholics, Mormons, etc., and most of the mainline Protestant denominations split into Northern and Southern denominations over the issues of slavery and civil rights. So white Southerners have more religious homogeneity than almost any other region of the country.

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