While every election cycle brings the “discovery” of some new demographic – usually some subset of suburban women with children like “Soccer Moms” or “Security Moms” – the most enduring political demographic trend in modern America has been the wholesale desertion of white males from the Democratic Party, and the Democrats’ ingrained aversion to any effort to get them back (beyond mere posturing). David Paul Kuhn wrote a book about the phenomenon, which he explains for The Politico:
The 2008 election offers the most diverse array of presidential candidates in history. But this rainbow campaign will hinge on the most durable reality of American politics: White men matter most.
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In 2000, exit polling showed white women backed George W. Bush over Al Gore by 3 percentage points, but white men backed him by 27 percentage points. Four years later, with John F. Kerry carrying the Democratic banner, the margin was 26 points.
The Bush years have echoed with what-if questions: What if the votes in Florida had been counted differently in 2000, if Ralph Nader had not run or if Gore had been able to carry his home state? What if Kerry had responded more deftly to the Swift Boat Veterans in 2004?
A more powerful what-if is to imagine that Democratic nominees had succeeded in narrowing the white male gap to even the low 20s instead of the mid-20s. Both Kerry and Gore would have won easily.
In 2008, Democrats are assembling behind a front-runner, Hillary Rodham Clinton, with singular problems among white males. Polls show her support among this group is approaching the record lows scored by Democrats during the peak of Ronald Reagan’s popularity in the 1980s.
Read the rest at the second link above. Kuhn examines the history and economics of the trend.
Democrats have a number of problems winning back white male voters. Obviously, their policies don’t sell well, for one thing. White men are much more likely to support a strong military and aggressive foreign policy than other groups are, and tend to be more hostile to new taxes, regulations, and government programs.
Of course, the fact that the Democratic left has tended to demonize us over the years doesn’t make them any more attractive, either. Every social problem seems to be blamed on “the white male power structure,” as if we are all in on some grand conspiracy. To listen to Democrats pander to their interest groups over the last few decades, they must envision the following fiction as a daily phone call:
Biff (answering phone): Biffington H. Wordsworth IV speaking.
Chip: Morning, Biff – Chip here. Say, old man, I’m up to my tennis elbows over here trying to enforce our patriarchal construct, and the glass ceiling is showing cracks all over the place. Could you lend me a hand?
Biff: Sorry, my friend, but my plate’s full. I’ve been repressing minorities all morning – these black men aren’t going to keep themselves down, you know – and there’s a whole line of gays and transgendered individuals who need to be marginalized before lunch.
Chip: Quite right, old chap, that had slipped my mind. The White Man’s burden, but we’ll get it done. Are we still on for drinks at the all-white private club after work tonight?
It’s quite understandable when Democrats, who seem to view white males as oppressors and monsters, refuse to make any serious effort to attract our votes. It should be equally understandable why they do not get them.