................fighting the bad fight since 135 BC................

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Democrats losing support in formerly solid demographic groups

Democrats formerly could count on certain demographic groups for the bulk of their votes. Such groups included women, who are presumably more concerned about issues concerning children than (often absentee) men, the poor, who often depend on social assistance, and Catholics, who tended to shy away from the WASP aristocracy in charge of the Republicans. As this New York Times article (crossposted here on MSNBC) indicates, the Democrats are in trouble with regards to these folks with the midterm elections just days away:
Critical parts of the coalition that delivered President Obama to the White House in 2008 and gave Democrats control of Congress in 2006 are switching their allegiance to the Republicans in the final phase of the midterm Congressional elections, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.

Republicans have wiped out the advantage held by Democrats in recent election cycles among women, Catholics, less affluent Americans and independents; all of those groups broke for Mr. Obama in 2008 and for congressional Democrats when they grabbed both chambers from the Republicans four years ago, according to exit polls.

The poll found that a greater proportion of women would choose Republicans over Democrats in House races than at any time since exit polls began tracking the breakdown in 1982.
Lately there has been much talk about Democratic voters closing the precious "enthusiasm gap" as compared to Republican voters. Apparently much of this has been little more than media hype:
Like several other national polls, the latest Times/CBS poll shows a considerable “enthusiasm” gap between Republicans and Democrats heading into Election Day. Six in 10 Republicans said they were more enthusiastic to vote this year than usual. Four in 10 Democrats said the same.
More about women voters here:
In the case of women, who Obama has been actively courting this fall, the shift toward the Republicans was especially marked in the latest poll, especially when compared to their stated preferences in the very last Times/CBS poll, in mid-September.

In that poll, women favored Democrats over Republicans by seven percentage points. In the latest poll, women say they are likely to vote to support a Republican over a Democrat by four percentage points, suggesting Republican gains among women who were undecided as of last month.
All of this seems to run counter to the narrative that most of the MSM has been articulating over the past few weeks -- that is, that the Democrats have been enjoying a bounce in support with the midterms looming ever-closer. Obama has certainly been working hard to create that impression, and the media seems to be reporting his motives as fact without doing their homework.

That's not to say that certain races, such as the Senate race in Nevada between Harry Reid and Sharron Angle, won't go down to the wire. One misstep or victory by one side or the other could decide the race. But this supposedly sudden surge in Democratic interest? It doesn't seem to be happening.

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