What can we learn from the 2012 Presidential election?
How about this? In politics (as we might have occasionally mentioned over the dozen years of VDARE.com’s existence) demography is destiny.
Mainstream Republicans appear to be waking up to a reality that they’ve gone out of their way to not think about in the 15 years since Peter Brimelow and Ed Rubenstein pointed out that immigration-driven demographic change was bad for the GOP.
But, not having exercised their intellects about demographics over the intervening years, the first reaction of the Republican brain trust has been to grab the helpful advice of their Democratic colleagues: capitulate on Amnesty!!!
Nothing generates respect more than weakness and surrender, right?
The Democrats, these GOP strategists apparently reckon, have outsmarted us on demographics. So, being smart, they must know what is good for us, right?
After all, the only alternative would be to think for ourselves. And thinking makes our heads overheat.
However, for those of us who do think about demographics, here are two fairly good sources of data. One has gotten close to zero attention.
Here’s a chart you won’t see elsewhere:
Chart By Steve Sailer; Exit Polling By Reuters-Ipsos, Sample Size 40,000.
Before the election, I presented demographic data on 7,500 likely voters collected in October by Reuters in conjunction with the French polling firm Ipsos. What I now present above are some of their new November election numbers, using their huge sample of 41,227 actual voters. My bar chart is arranged in rank order of each group’s share of the vote going to Romney—from black single women at 2.4 percent to Mormons at 85.9 percent.
As you can see, although Obama claimed to be a uniter in 2008, in fact his 2012 campaign was scientifically divisive. The Obama coalition of fringe elements in American society is united by one main driving force: resentment of the core groups in American society—such as married white people. Hence the vitriol from the victors since Tuesday, with much chest pounding about the long-hoped for death of white America.
My bar chart was created with the help of Reuters’ superb website at American Mosaic Polling Explorer, which lets let you crosstab their data any way you like. The existence of this resource appears to be the best kept secret in the Main Stream Media. Nobody except Reuters is talking about it.
Instead, the MSM is going with the Edison exit poll, which has a sample size of 26,565. This is understandable, because the MSM paid for Edison. But it means we’re getting the same old prefab crosstabs that don’t answer the truly interesting questions.
The Edison sample size used to be enormous (almost 88,000 in 2004). Recently, however, it’s been scaled back to save money. For example, Edison didn’t release any exit polls on the voting in Texas, the country’s second biggest state, without whose 34 Electoral Votes no Republican seems likely to ever be elected President again, because its sampling was so sparse in that Republican state.
Which ought to raise a red flag about the headline news from Edison: Hispanics cast ten percent of the national vote in 2012. But how can you be so sure about the Latino vote if you barely sampled in Texas?
Overall, exit polls are not well suited for measuring turnout. The pollsters have to decide ahead of time which precincts to hire workers to cover, so they need a model of whom they expect will vote in what numbers. Not surprisingly, they tend to get back roughly the results they anticipated.
Another dirty secret: exit poll data of whatever origin typically gets massaged by the firm immediately after the election to make it match up better with actual vote totals. I can recall, for instance, Edison’s demographics shifting dramatically on my screen in the wee hours of Election Night 2004, as all evidence of their initial report of the triumph of President-Elect Kerry had to be crammed down the memory hole.
It took a couple of months of Michelle Malkin, myself and others pointing out that Edison’s celebrated report of Bush taking 44 percent of the Hispanic vote didn’t jibe with the actual votes before Edison finally retracted that guesstimate in early 2005. By then, it had become an apparently unkillable myth.
Indeed, Edison’s exit polling has had a track record of overestimating the size of the Hispanic vote. It usually reports a dramatic number deceptively higher than the big, carefully controlled Census Bureau survey reports that appear several months after the election—when nobody in the MSM pays attention. Edison’s attitude seems to be: If we’re off by four or eight or twelve years, it’s no biggie.
I’m not going to make a big deal about this either. I don’t have any more idea than Edison does what percentage of the vote was Hispanic. But I do know it ought to go through the formality of becoming true.
The Edison poll is a mixture of in-person interviews at voting locations and phone calls, whereas the Reuters poll is mostly an online panel. Cyberspace makes it cheap to sample all over. Thus in Texas, Reuters is able to report that Romney won only 37 percent of the growing Hispanic vote. That’s quite a bit better than Romney did nationally. But of course it is still ominous for the long-term future of the Republican Party. If Texas follows California from red to blue, it’s Game Over in the Electoral College.
Nevertheless, unless the Republican Big Boys cave in to putting illegal aliens on the “path to citizenship,” it’s not a near-term threat—because Romney won a stunning 76 percent of the white vote in Texas, to canter to an easy victory.
White solidarity in Texas is likely to keep the Republicans viable in the White House hunt for a few more elections.
Of course, the Republicans can’t win more than 100 percent of the white vote in Texas. The distant future does look dire for them…unless they DO something about immigration.
Note that, in 2008, the GOP nominated John McCain, sponsor of the 2006 amnesty bill with Ted Kennedy. According to the conventional wisdom that Hispanic voters only care about immigration, McCain should have been a great choice. Instead, he only earned 31 percent of the Latino vote—not significantly better than Romney’s 28.3%, according to Reuters.
Note also, for the record, that Reuters/ Ipsos shows Romney’s overall white share as just 58.1% vs. Edison’s 59%. This makes it clearer that Romney’s white share remained stuck at the high end of the mediocre post-Reagan range. (More comparisons here).
Having a second opinion from Reuters is particularly helpful for small sample size groups. For example, both Edison and Reuters report that Jewish support for Romney rose from the Obamamania depths of 2008. Edison has Romney’s 2012 Jewish vote at 30 percent and Reuters at 34 percent. If you assume Jewish opinion tends to be out in front of the rest of the public, that bodes a modest amount of ill for Obama’s second term.
And what about the Asian vote, which Edison reported as an unprecedentedly low 26 percent for the Republican candidate? Is that a trend? Or a small sample size fluke? (In contrast, Edison says the enigmatic “Other” racial category gave 38 percent to Romney.)
Unfortunately, Reuters just lumps Asians in with all “Other Minorities.” Of that group, 38 percent voted for Romney.
So I would say the jury remains out on the interesting question: Is legal immigration from Asia disastrous for the GOP—or just bad?
Thanks again, Wall Street Journal Edit Page!
Finally, there’s another finding from the Reuters data that’s not widely comprehended yet.
Romney could have won the Electoral College in what can be called the Big Ten states (after the college football conference of the Great Lakes and Upper Midwest: remember, Illinois and Michigan each have two teams in the Big Ten). He did win Indiana, and he lost Obama’s home state of Illinois badly. The other six states in this region, however, all slipped through his fingers: Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
In each of these Slippery Six states, Romney won at least 45 percent of the vote. But he still wound up a cumulative 0 for 80 in Electoral Votes. If Romney, rather than Obama, had won all six, he’d be President.
The Slippery Six are states with old-fashioned white and black voting demographics, still with a smattering of old time unionized factory workers. Hispanics, much less Asians, are, for the moment, still a minor matter politically.
According to Reuters, Romney lost the Slippery Six states because (exactly as VDARE.com warned repeatedly while digging white share data out of reluctant tracking polls, see here and here and here), he did badly there among white voters—winning only 52 percent, six points worse than nationally.
Most notably, Romney did terribly among the white working class in these six states. Thus he did only two points worse among whites with college degrees in the Slippery Six than he did nationally. But among the white “some college” component, he came in six points worse than nationally. And among the white “no college” voters, he performed 11 points worse than across the country—finishing tied with Obama.
In fact (although sample sizes are getting small), Romney even appears to have suffered the ignominy of a reverse gender gap among no-college whites in the Slippery Six—winning 51.4 percent of the women, but only 48 percent of the white working class men.
So the hidden story of the 2012 election just might come down to Romney not appealing to blue collar white guys in this swing region. Or you could attribute it to the immensely rich Obama campaign’s relentless negative advertising all summer depicting Romney as an outsourcing zillionaire.
But, how much did Romney offer working class whites in this swing region? Did they have much cause for hope that he’d take a strong stand against legal and illegal immigration? Affirmative Action? How about some public sympathy about their difficulties with influxes of Section 8 renters, whom rich liberals have been evicting from Chicago lakefront housing projects? Is that fair?
No—but mentioning it is divisive!
It’s much less controversial for Republicans just to stick to “economism”…and lose.
Steve Sailer (email him) is movie critic for The American Conservative and writes regularly for Takimag. His websitewww.iSteve.blogspot.com features his daily blog. His book, AMERICA’S HALF-BLOOD PRINCE: BARACK OBAMA’S "STORY OF RACE AND INHERITANCE", is available here and here (Kindle)