Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Millennials Got Even With Trump In 2018-- Just Wait For 2020


Ron Brownstein, reporting for CNN, offered the GOP a ton of bad news yesterday. Young voters were out in force last month-- and whether they like Democrats or not-- they punished the GOP severely, primarily for Trump. 2020, a presidential election year, will be worse-- or, depending on your perspective-- better.

In California, for example, young voters helped flip 7 of the Republicans' 14 House seats. Of the 7 left, Democrats will be aiming to take out Doug LaMalfa, Tom McClintock, Paul Cook, Devin Nunes, Ken Calvert and Duncan Hunter (whose trial-- he and his wife face 60 criminal counts-- begins early next September). In Pennsylvania, Democrats flipped 5 red seats and next cycle they'll be looking at Brian Fitzpatrick and Scott Perry as being the most vulnerable of the remaining 9 Republicans. In New Jersey a 7 (D) to 5 (R) delegation is now 11 (D) to 1 (R); Chris Smith will have all guns trained on his Monmouth, Ocean and Mercer counties district. In Texas, Democrats only flipped two districts but they came close enough in 8 to have Will Hurd, Kenny Marchant, Michael McCaul, Pete Olson, John Carter, Roger Williams, Chip Roy, Van Taylor, Ron Wright and Dan Crenshaw on the target list for 2020. In New York, Lee Zeldin, Peter King, Elise Stefanik, Tom Reed, John Katko and Chris Collins-- the only Republicans left in the 27-person delegation-- are all on the danger list.

Other GOP incumbents who look like they should get ready for major assaults include Don Young (AK), David Schweikert (AZ), Debbie Lesko (AZ), French Hill (AR), Scott Tipton (CO), Ross Spano (FL), Vern Buchanan (FL), Brian Mast, Rob Woodall (GA), Mike Bost (IL), Rodney Davis (IL), Jackie Walorski (IN), Susan Brooks (IN), Steve King (IA), Steve Watkins (KS), Andy Barr (KY), Jack Bergman (MI), Fred Upton (MI), Tim Walberg (MI), Jim Hagedorn (MN), Peter Stauber (MN), Ann Wagner (MO), Greg Gianforte (MT), Don Bacon (NE), George Holding (NC), Mark Walker (NC), Richard Hudson (NC), Mark Harris (NC), Ted Budd (NC), Steve Chabot (OH), Troy Balderson (OH), David Joyce (OH), Anthony Gonzalez (OH), Joe Wilson (SC), Rob Wittman (VA), Denver Riggleman (VA), Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA), Bryn Steil (WI) and Glenn Grothman (WI).

Brownstein thinks the pain millennials dealt out to the GOP in November "may be only the overture to an even greater political risk for the GOP in 2020. Both historical voting patterns and underlying demographic trends suggest that the biggest difference in the electorate between this election and the next one is that relatively younger voters will cast a greater share of the votes in the presidential year-- perhaps a much larger share. Even with much higher than usual turnout among young voters this year, voters 45 and below are likely to increase their proportion of the total vote from just under three-in-ten this year to something closer to four-in-ten by 2020, historical trends suggest."

If the Democrats are smart enough to nominate candidates who appeal to younger voters, like Bernie, instead of another status quo nothing like Biden, the damage to the GOP could be enough to take out another the Republican Senate majority and flip another couple dozen red House seats. "Several states with Democratic campaigns that particularly targeted young people," wrote Brownstein, "saw bigger increases, according to previously unpublished Catalist data. In Arizona, the share of the vote cast by those under 45 spiked from 21% in 2014 to 29% this year; in Georgia, the numbers jumped from 29% to 36%; Texas increased from 26% to 33%.
"They will certainly be a larger percent of voters than they were in 2018 given presidential versus midterm trends," says Yair Ghitza, the chief scientist at Catalist, a leading Democratic voter targeting and election modeling firm. "The question is to what extent the [higher] engagement we saw in 2018 will continue and be better than in 2016 and other presidential years."

A rising participation level could threaten Republicans at a moment when younger voters, who have consistently expressed preponderant opposition to President Donald Trump in polls, provided Democrats their largest margins in decades during last month's election.

"Voters under 45 moved decisively and overwhelmingly toward Democrats, and I don't know how you take it as anything other than a total rebuke of Trump and what's he done," says Democratic pollster Andrew Baumann, who has extensively studied younger voters.

Despite Democrats' emphatic gains among younger voters, Republican pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson, author of The Selfie Vote, a book on the Millennial Generation, says the GOP shows no signs of grappling with the shift. "Even though the election, especially on the House side, was not good for Republicans there has not been an appetite for a course correction or a change in approach," she says. "So it would surprise me if there was a concerted effort to try win over more young voters between now and the 2020 election."
In the 2014 midterm, around 20% of voters between 18 and 29 cast ballots. This year it was 31%. We're going to see that number grow substantially on 2020. "Heightened turnout in 2020," wrote Brownstein, "would raise the price for the losses Republicans suffered among younger voters this year. In the exit polls, Democrats carried fully 67% of voters aged 18-29 in House elections. That represented their best performance among adults under 30 in any House election since at least 1986; it even exceeded their modern high points of around three-fifths in the 2006 midterm election and the 2008 and 2012 presidential years, when former President Barack Obama was on the ballot. Just two years ago, House Democrats carried a much less imposing 56% of these voters in the 2016 election, exit polls found. Similarly, exit polls this year found House Democrats captured 58% among voters aged 30-44. That's also the highest share of the vote Democrats have won in that age group since 1986. House Democrats had lost those voters, who might be described as early middle-aged, as recently as 2010 and had not carried more than 52% of them in any of the three elections since."
These results were remarkably consistent across regional lines. Democrats carried voters aged 18-29 in all 22 Senate races in which an exit poll was conducted, except for Indiana, where the two candidates tied. Many of their margins among these youngest voters were enormous. In the US Senate race in Texas, Democrat Beto O'Rourke, despite losing the race, carried 71% of voters younger than 30, the exit polls found. Gavin Newsom won 69% of voters younger than 30 in winning the California governor's race, and Stacey Abrams carried just under two-thirds of them in her losing Georgia gubernatorial bid.

...But while the GOP's difficulties with the Millennial Generation predate Trump, there seems little doubt that he has compounded them. From the outset, many millennials viewed Trump's belligerent language on race and immigration, and his belittling comments about women, as an explicit counterrevolution against the ideal of a more inclusive and tolerant America that most of them say they support. In a summer 2016 ABC/Washington Post survey, two thirds of voters under 40 said they considered Trump biased against women and minorities.

But doubts about Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton blocked the full expression of those doubts: while Trump in 2016 carried almost exactly the same share of voters under 30 as GOP nominee Mitt Romney did in 2012 (just over one-third), Clinton fell a crucial five percentage points below Obama's showing, as many young people scattered to the minor party alternatives. Voters 30-44 split even more closely, with Clinton carrying just 51 percent of them in the exit poll. (Catalist's vote modeling produced generally similar results for both groups in 2016.)

In this election, Trump faced a withering verdict from younger voters. In the exit polls, 66% of voters aged 18-29 and 62% of those aged 30-44 said they disapproved of his performance in office. In each group, just over half said they strongly disapproved of Trump's performance, significantly more than the share of older voters (just over two-fifths) who said they were so strongly disenchanted with him.

"The disapproval of Trump, and the views of him as being a racist and sexist that we saw [among young people] in 2016, was somewhat muted by not loving Hillary Clinton," said Baumann. "But it just got amplified after him being in power for two years. One of my theories coming out of 2016 was that Republicans by embracing Trump were at risk of losing a generation of voters, and it sure seems like that is coming to the fore now."

...Trump is still committing the GOP to a strategy of squeezing more advantage from groups that are shrinking. All of the major data sources on the electorate's composition-- from the Census Bureau to the exit polls to Catalist-- agree that the share of the vote cast by Trump's core group of whites without a college education has been declining by about two percentage points over each four-year presidential cycle. With turnout among minorities and college-educated whites surging, Catalist's preliminary analysis found those working-class whites, while still the electorate's largest single group, dropped fully five points as a share of the vote this year, compared to the last mid-term in 2014.

One thing no political strategy can reverse is the tide of generational replacement. As not only the World War II and Silent Generations, but also more baby boomers pass out of the electorate, the share of the eligible voting pool comprised of Generation X, millennials and Post-millennials is inexorably rising. The States of Change project forecasts those three generations-- which are much more racially diverse and college-educated than the generations they are replacing-- will continue growing to about two-thirds of eligible voters by 2024 and nearly three-fourths by 2028. More voters mean more consequences if Republicans can't soften the recoil from the party that younger voters displayed last month. "It's...a clear and present danger to any Republican policy maker who expects their name will be on a ballot after 2020," says Anderson. "Donald Trump will run for reelection in 2020, and I am out of the business of saying he can't pull this off. But if you are a more conventional Republican...who has ambitions of being in political office for more than the next two years you ought to be gravely concerned about this."
This desperate and pathetic GOP/Fox News perspective worked out very badly for Republican candidates up and down the ballot:

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At 5:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"In the 2014 midterm, around 20% of voters between 18 and 29 cast ballots. This year it was 31%. We're going to see that number grow substantially on 2020."

Pure hyperbole. The only way this conclusion will prove to be true is if the democraps flip on their donors and actually produce results -- beginning with impeaching trump, pence and kkkavanaugh.

Pelosi won't let that happen. So there will be no reason at all for that number to grow. In fact, history shows us that when the democraps have juice and still refuse to use it, that number will go back down to below 20%.

Bernie might be able to keep it at around a third. But, again and still, the democraps will do all they can, by hook AND by crook, to prevent that.

At 6:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Instead of preparing to take on Republicans, the democraps will be subverting the progressives and plotting to throttle Bernie's pending candidacy. The GOP will have two years to prepare for the assault.

At 12:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Nazis are incapable of being anything but misanthropes, sociopaths and pure evil; and will do nothing to "prepare".

It is the democraps who will have a year or so to prepare their defense against another Bernie run. The party has already changed some rules to make it harder. They'll change more if they feel the need. And the party is also ready with vote fraud if necessary. 2016 was bad. 2020 might just be a GOP-style fraudgasm. After all, they learned from that which they refuse to fix.

At 6:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

millennials didn't get even with anything. They were so excited about the democraps that less than a third of them showed up.

about half of those will not show up when the democraps take another huge dump on them in this congress.

So... the excitement of 2020 is pure delusion.


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