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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Teixeira: Young Voter Data Indicates Disaster Likely Ahead for GOP

The following article by Ruy Teixeira, author of The Optimistic Leftist and other works of political analysis, is cross-posted from his blog:

Were We Just a Bit Early?

I mean about the emerging Democratic majority. David Brooks seems to think that could be the case. In his latest column, he writes about something I’ve written about quite a few times recently (you always see it here first!): generational turnover in the American electorate and the potentially dire implications of this for the GOP.

“In 2002, John B. Judis and Ruy Teixeira wrote a book called “The Emerging Democratic Majority,” which predicted electoral doom for the G.O.P. based on demographic data. That prediction turned out to be wrong, or at least wildly premature….

But it’s hard to look at the generational data and not see long-term disaster for Republicans. Some people think generations get more conservative as they age, but that is not borne out by the evidence. Moreover, today’s generation gap is not based just on temporary intellectual postures. It is based on concrete, lived experience that is never going to go away.”

Brooks also notes:

“To put it bluntly, young adults hate [the Republican Party].

In 2018, voters under 30 supported Democratic House candidates over Republican ones by an astounding 67 percent to 32 percent. A 2018 Pew survey found that 59 percent of millennial voters identify as Democrats or lean Democratic, while only 32 percent identify as Republicans or lean Republican.

The difference is ideological. According to Pew, 57 percent of millennials call themselves consistently liberal or mostly liberal. Only 12 percent call themselves consistently conservative or mostly conservative. This is the most important statistic in American politics right now.

Recent surveys of Generation Z voters (those born after 1996) find that, if anything, they are even more liberal than millennials.”

I’ll just note here that the next year of my multi-institutional States of Change project will be looking at just this: the potential effects of generational shifts on American politics. Nice to see at least some pundits catching on to how important these changes may be.

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