I was stunned, absolutely stunned, by the latest week's polling by Democrat-leaning Public Policy Polling for the ultra-liberal Daily Kos and the activist public employee union, SEIU. The Romney "up four" suggests that the recent Gallup polls showing him up 4 to 7 points nationally may not really be outliers. More interesting are some of the cross tabs, the slicing and dicing of the data.
Some of the data was not new news:
- Democrat and Republican defectors are in single digits, with independents favoring Romney by double digits.
- White voters favor Romney 60 to 37%, with disappointing results among minorities.
- Voters under 30 favor Obama, but all groupings over 30 favor Romney, increasing with age - the old observation that if you aren't liberal when you are young you have no heart; if you are not conservative when you are old, you have no brain.
Some was surprising:
- Even with this pollster, Romney and Ryan had net favorable ratings while Obama and, particularly, Biden were net negative.
- Native Americans favored Romney 52 to 41. This may be an outlier sample, but it is a totally new thought to me and worth understanding.
For people trying to figure out who the "middle class" is, the data is very interesting:
- In economic terms, those earning under $30,000 per year and those earning over $100,000 favored Obama. Those in between favored Romney, with the greatest strength in the $75,000 to 100,000 range. All of the "tax the rich" rhetoric seems to be OK with his base at the top as well as the bottom. Aspirants to richdom favor Republicans.
- Education is even more interesting. Those who did not graduate high school favor Obama about two to one; those with post graduate degrees favor him by 15 points. High school graduates, college graduates, and those with some college favor Romney by double digits. There seem to be more doctors, lawyers, and academics than MBAs.
Whether "middle class" is defined in economic or educational terms, the territory belongs to Republicans. This long election season has included an unusual amount of class warfare by the Obama campaign. The "aha moment" of the Daily Kos polling is the degree to which the Republicans are the party of the economic and educational middle class while the Democrats are the party of the economic and educational elite taking care of the "huddled masses" - or using them to maintain power.
This video is for those who are waiting to hear the new agenda for President Obama's second term and haven't had a chance to grab a copy of his new pamphlet.
bill bowen - 10/25/12