Saturday, July 13, 2013

The American Prospect's Paul Waldman: State-Level Republicans in the South See Little Need to Reach Out to Minorities

In a piece for The American Prospect, Paul Waldman provocatively claims that, for Republicans in Southern state legislatures, they have little incentive to reach out to minority voters.

Waldman maintains that the demographic troubles facing the GOP at the national level just don't apply at the Southern state level.  He cites the exit poll data showing the overwhelming Southern white support of the McCain-Palin ticket in 2008. In Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana in 2008, over 80% of whites in each of those three Deep South states voted for the GOP ticket.

While the national GOP is awash in angst about its ability to adjust to American demographic change, in Dixie, these are the halcyon days for Southern Republicans.  As described by Waldman, the structural basis of this Republican dominance (and likely continued dominance) in the South comes down to party and racial allegiance.  He claims that "it's little exaggeration to say that Republicans in the South would be happy if every elected Democrat in their state was a black Democrat."

Walman notes that in states like Alabama--a state where Romney won around 90% of the white vote in 2012--the GOP does not need any Black voters.  He maintains that, for a hypothetical Alabama Republican, "an all-white party is just fine with you."

Waldman's column is linked below.

The American Prospect: Little Incentive for State-level GOP to seek minority support

"This isn't equally easy in every state, but in some places in the South, the proportion of white Republicans has grown so high that once they can segregate the black voters (so to speak), it doesn't just mean they're no longer vulnerable to Democratic challengers on an individual basis, it also means their hold on power in the state as a whole is virtually assured."

---Paul Waldman, The American Prospect

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