perich + voting   3

INDEPENDENCE | Gin and Tacos
The CCES data here demonstrate pretty clearly a point I'm often trying to make, which is: Don't "independents" in this data look an awful lot like Republicans? Like, suspiciously so? Almost like Independents are really Republicans who don't want to, for whatever reason, think of or announce themselves as Republicans?

The rise of Independent identification in survey data – and it has risen sharply in recent years – is the worst thing ever to happen to political consultants. They see the word "independent" and believe that it signifies a large mass of undecided voters just waiting to be hit with the right message to sway them. For some independents that may be so; various estimates in research suggest that maybe 1 in 10 voters falls into this category and genuinely does not make up their minds until late in an election. For the majority, though, there is no meaningful independence. It's just a label.

Chuck Schumer famously said in 2016, “For every blue-collar Democrat we lose in western Pennsylvania, we will pick up two moderate Republicans in the suburbs in Philadelphia, and you can repeat that in Ohio and Illinois and Wisconsin.” That election helped demonstrate the flaws not only in targeting opposing partisans (hint: moderate Republican is still Republican. It says Republican right in the name) but in assuming that Independents are Independent. Generally they aren't. This is well understood.
demographics  conservatives  voting  independents  libertarianism  polling 
october 2018 by perich
Stop Blaming Poor People for Their Poverty
The problem, in other words, isn’t that poor people oppose increases in taxes on the rich. The problem is that it often doesn’t matter what they want. As one influential article by Princeton professor Martin Gilens finds, poor Americans and even middle-class Americans have virtually no say in public policy when their opinions diverge from their well-heeled counterparts. “Influence over actual policy outcomes,” Gilens concludes, “appears to be reserved exclusively for those at the top of the income distribution.”
electoral_politics  democracy  voting 
march 2018 by perich
Democrats are still obsessed with Jill Stein. They should start obsessing over nonvoters instead.
"But," you may protest, "Donald Trump won by a margin smaller than the number of Green Party votes in key states, particularly the Upper Midwest!" And you're right, that's true. Take Michigan: Trump won Michigan by 13,225 votes, while Jill Stein walked away with 51,463 votes. Clearly, if all of those people had voted for Hillary Clinton instead of Stein, Clinton would have won Michigan. (Whether Stein votes ought to be otherwise considered shoo-in Democrat votes is a separate matter.)

If these are the only variables of interest to us — the number of ballots affirmatively cast for Trump, Clinton, Stein, and maybe Johnson — then yeah, the Stein-as-spoiler argument makes some sense. But here's another number, one that ought to change your perspective: 87,810. That's how many Michigan voters showed up to the polls, cast ballots, and declined to vote for a presidential candidate at all.

MORE PERSPECTIVES

ERICA GRIEDER
Can we blame California for Trump?

PASCAL-EMMANUEL GOBRY
The perils of reflexively politicizing tragedy
That compares to 49,840 such "undervotes" in 2012. It was a veritable phenomenon last year — people stood in line and performed their civic duty, but simply abstained from marking a preference for commander in chief. An analysis published by The Washington Post tallied 1.7 million undervotes in 33 states. The number was up in most states, they concluded, by an average of 2.5 times as much as in 2012.
jill_stein  democracy  election2016  third_party  green_party  voting  meagan_day 
june 2017 by perich

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